Listen: Prime Minister, Congress Party, Feroze Gandhi discussed on This Day in History Class
"Hello and welcome to the podcast. I'm Tracy b Wilson. And it's November nineteenth in beer Gandhi was born on the stay in nineteen seventeen. She is as of this recording. The only woman to be prime minister of India. Her father Jawara Hurrell neru was India's first prime minister serving from nineteen forty seven to nineteen sixty four. She got a very prestigious education, and as a young woman was part of India's struggle for independence from Britain. So was her father so were many other people in their family? She joined the congress party in nineteen thirty eight and then she married. Her husband Feroze Gandhi on March twenty six thousand nine hundred forty two he was also a member of the congress party. They would go on to have two children Indira Gandhi held a lot of political offices in India. And then when her father became the prime minister, she acted as hostess this was. A role that often would be filled by the prime minister's spouse, but Indira Gandhi, his mother died of tuberculosis in nineteen thirty six. So she became the person who acted his host was often his companion, he traveled also after her father became prime minister. She became part of the congress party's working committee in nineteen sixty four. Her father's successor, named her the minister of information and broadcasting and then he died in office in nineteen sixty six that's when Indira Gandhi became the leader of the congress party, which also made her the prime minister, she had been placed in this position through a compromise between different factions within the congress party. But at the same time her leadership was immediately and frequently challenged she served three consecutive terms holding other roles during that time which included being the minister of atomic energy, and leading the ministry of external affairs and the ministry of home affairs, various points, her first terms. In office. We're really contentious and Mark with a lot of infighting within her political party, including a spin off into an entirely new party known as the new congress party. And this time was also marked with a lot of strife on the subcontinent. But at the same time Ghandi's early tenure as prime minister also had its share of successes, including a program that made the country more self sufficient in terms of its food production. There were also a lot of very popular social welfare programs that were rolled out in nineteen seventy-one Gandhi also supported East Pakistan in its effort to separate from west Pakistan becoming the independent nation of Bangladesh. This included taking in Pakistani refugees as well as supplying troops and arms and eventually invading Pakistan after the nineteen seventy one election, though, she was charged with breaking election law and after a court ruled against her. She was supposed to resign her post and then not run for office again for a period of six years and. Instead, though, she declared a state of emergency and imprisoned her political opponents as well as political dissidents, she implemented a number of widely unpopular measures, including a mass sterilization program that was an attempt at population control. This period is called the emergency. And it's also nicknamed the reign of terror. There was heavy resistance to all of this. But the state of emergency went on for twenty one months when a new election was finally held in nineteen seventy seven at which point. She was pretty confident that the new congress party would win. Again, the party was instead massively defeated Ghandi once again formed another political party this time called congress is with the I for Indira in parentheses, and this party started gaining power in parliament before winning a wide majority in nineteen eighty which put Gandhi back into the role of prime minister, her son Sanjay who she had been grooming. As her successor had a seat in parliament as well and was one of her advisers, but he died in a plane crash that June. This term is prime minister was once again, really tumultuous they were some Indian states that we're looking for autonomy.."