Details on the Prime Ministers of India

This article describes about the life and story of all fourteen Prime Ministers of India from 1947 to 2012. In this article important dates and major events in the life of all Prime Ministers are provided from the first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to Dr.Manmohan Singh in order. Rare details are also provided on each personality under respective topics.


In the Indian history, fourteen Indians sat on the supreme throne of Indian Legislative Assembly as The Prime ministers of democratic India. These were leaders who the Indians selected from themselves for leading them through elections. They guided the country pertinently though all situations India were through. From the first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to Manmohan Singh, all of these leaders were efficient in one way or the other and have helped India in its path of development. In this article all important information and details concerning all fourteen Indian Prime ministers is provided.

The first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru

Jawaharlal Nehru was the first prime minister of free India. He came into power on the fourteenth of August 1947 midnight. Jawaharlal Nehru was at his 57 years old at that time. At the very beginning of his days as the Prime minister there was a lot of commotion in and outside India which he had to sort out. These included problems related to division of India, the problems due to linguistic state division in India and many more. Resolving every one of these problems with his expertise and hard work he put his motherland in an esteemed position among the world nations. So he came to be known as the architect of India.

It was on the fourteenth of November 1889; Jawaharlal Nehru was born as the son of Motilal Nehru and Swaroop Rani in a wealthy family. During his childhood, Nehru didn’t have many friends and he used to spend most of his time at home itself. He was taught by teachers who came to his house every day. His higher education was in Haro School, England. After attaining his degree from the Cambridge Trinity College in 1970; he returned to his mother land in 1912. He started practicing as a lawyer with his father and later he joined the Allahabad high court. He married Kamala Kaul in the year 1916.He met Mahatma Gandhi in 1916 at the congress meeting in Lucknow.

Nehru became an active participator in the Indian freedom struggle starting from the non- cooperative movement. He was first arrested and imprisoned by the British in the year 1921 December. He had to spend almost nine years in the prison throughout his life. It was during the time he spend in prison, he wrote the famous books including, Discovery of India and Glimpses of world history. 1942 was the year in which he was a part of the Quit-India movement leading from front and in 1947 as India become free he became the first Prime Minister.

He Implemented many policies for development and took many steps for maintaining international peace. It was with his hard work, the non-alignment movement came in to being. The encroachment by China on India in 1962 was the biggest challenge he faced during his administrative period. It was on the twenty seventh of May 1964, Jawaharlal Nehru, after his seventeen years as the Prime Minister of India left India and the world and surrendered himself to death. Nehru was the only Prime Minister of India to have stayed in that position for such a long period of time. Today in India Nehru’s birthday is celebrated as children’s day observing his love to small children who affectionately called him ‘Chachaji’.

Ghulzari Lal Nandha-Acting Prime Minister

Gulzhari Lal Nandha was the second Prime Minister of India. He, who was a minister in the cabinet, was selected as the Acting Prime Minister after the sudden death of Jawaharlal Nehru. He served India in this position only for a period of sixteen days after which, lal Bahadur Shastri became the Prime Minister. But once again he had to take the same position as the Acting Prime Minister, in 1966 when lal Bahadur Shastri died. Again this was only for fourteen days after which Indira Gandhi came in to power.

Gulzhari was born in the year 1898, on July fourth in Siyalkottil. Bulighiram was his father and Ishwara Devi was his mother. He earned his higher degree from Allahabad University after his education in Lahore, Agra and Allahabad. He has done service in the Mumbai national college as economics professor. He resigned from this job in 1921 to take part in the non-cooperative movement and later on in the Indian freedom struggle till the Quit-India movement in 1942.

He was the first planning commission vice chairman of Republic India. He has also been in the positions of planning minister, defense minister and railway minister. Gulzhari Lal Nandha, who left the politics in the year 1975 in protest of declaration of Emergency in India by Indira Gandhi, died on the fifteenth of January fifteenth, 1998.

The second Prime Minister-Lal Bahadur Shastri

Lal Bahadur Shastri who was born on the 2nd of October in 1940 in Kashi, Uttar Pradesh, became the second Prime Minister of India after the death of death of Jawaharlal Nehru in 1964. He was the son of Sharadha Prasad Srivasthava, a teacher and Ramdulari Devi.

Like Nehru and Nandha, Lal Bahadur also joined the Indian freedom struggle during the non-cooperative movement ad it was in the year 1921. He was arrested in protest but soon released. Later he joined the Kashi Vidyappdam to continue his studies. In 1927 he was married to Lalitha Devi. Like Nehru he has also spent almost nine years in prison throughout his life.

He became the railway minister in the year 1952, defense minister in the year 1961 and finally the Prime Minister in 1964 June ninth. It was during his administrative period the first Indo-Pak war took place which was mediated by the U.N.O in the end by a treaty. It was on the same day after Bahadur signed this treaty he died due to a heart stroke. The year was 1964 in which the great leader Lal Bahadur Shastri who taught India the slogan “Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan” left her forever.

Indira Gandhi-The Iron lady

Indira Gandhi, the ‘Iron Lady of India’ was the first woman to be the Prime Minister of India. She was the daughter of Jawaharlal Nehru and Kamala Nehru born in the year 1917, November seventeenth. Indira was an administrator of India who was brave enough to take many important decisions during her administrative period. She had another name, Priyadarshani which her parents gave her. Gandhiji, Annie Besant and many other great leaders had immense influence on the life of Indira Gandhi.

She too had her education at home like Jawaharlal Nehru and she too didn’t have many friends. After her primary education she joined the Shanthiniketan in 1934. After her education here, she for her higher education went to England and joined the Oxford University. It was during this time of her life, she met Faroese Gandhi who became her husband later in 1942, after she returned to India in 1941. Both Indira and Faeroes were arrested and send to prison for taking part in the freedom struggle.

After they were released in 1994 they gave birth to their first son Rajiv Gandhi, who later became India’s prime Minister. In 1953 Indira became Congress working committee member and in 1959, the Congress president. After the death of Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1966, Indira became the Prime Minister in January 24th. It was in1967 the congress won the public elections when Indira became the Prime Minister and Morarji Desai became the vice Prime Minister. It was after this there was split in the party and Indira and her followers made the new congress.

In 1971 India under the rule of Indira defeated Pakistan in the second Indo-Pak war which began as Pakistan attacked India. Indira supported the formation of Bangladesh as a new nation. This victory made India a powerful nation in Asia. After the public elections in 1971 and 1972 she continued in power. In 1984, a Sikh organization started terrorist activities to get provision for the formation of a separate nation.

Operation Blue Star was the outcome. Indira send the army to the golden temple, as she got information that it was their hideout. There were several killed and this provoked the terrorists. It was this that later led to the murder of Indira in 1984 October 31, when she was shot dead. She still lives in the heart of Indians as the Iron Lady.

Morarji Desai-The first non-congress Prime Minister

Morarji Desaiwas the first non-congress Prime Minister of India. He was born on February twenty ninth, 1896 as the son of Ranj Joafji Desai, a teacher in Bodeli, Gujarat. In 1984 after his education in Wilson College, he joined as the deputy collector. It was during that time Gandhiji declared the Salt Satyagraha. Desai left his job and joined the movement. He was imprisoned many times during the freedom struggle.

The people who influenced him in his life were Gandhiji and Sardar Vallabhai Patel. In 1956 Desai joined the ministry with Nehru. Initially he was the business minister and later the finance minister. Desai gave rise to the Janatha party and in 1977, his party defeated congress in the elections. He died in the year 1995, April.

Chawdari Charan Singh-The leader of farmers

After Morarji Desai, it was >Chawdari Charan Singh who took the place as the Prime Minister of India. It was his party which brought down the government under the leadership of Desai. It had the support of Indira and congress. But he could continue in that position only for 170 days, after which congress withdraw the support. Charan Singh was born on the 23rd of December 1902 in Uttar Pradesh. He had his education from government high school in Meerut and from Agra College. He took his master degree in science and later took degree in law and became a lawyer.

It was in 1937 he first participated in the election and he succeeded there. In the years 1946, 1952, 1962 and in 1967 he stood for elections and reached the legislative assembly. In 1946 he became a minister and continued for 15 years in different ministries. Later he became the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh for two times. Later he competed in the elections to the Loksabha in the year 1977 and success was with him. He was in the ministry with Desai, but after he separated from the party and the party split. He made a new ministry and later in 1979 July 28th he became the Prime Minister. He died in May 1987.

Rajiv Gandhi-The youth Prime Minister

After the sudden death of Indira Gandhi, her son Rajiv Gandhi was selected as the next Prime Minister in 1981, October 31th. Rajiv Gandhi was born on 20th of August 1944 in Allahabad. He had his schooling in Dehradun. His brother, Sanjay Gandhi also accompanied him during his childhood. After his schooling, Rajiv joined the trinity college for mechanical engineering. During his learning period in Cambridge, he met Sonia later they got married in 1968. After his studies in the Cambridge University he joined the Imperial College and preceded his studies in Mechanical Engineering.

Rajiv during his early youth didn't have any interest in politics. He liked science and also music. Rajiv always liked being a pilot, for which he joined the pilot club soon after he reached India after his studies from England. After his training he started his job as a pilot in the Indian Airlines. His mother Indira was the Prime Minister during that time. Rajeev joined politics after his brother Sanjay died in a plane crash in 1980.

In 1981 he competed in the public elections and his success took him to the Loksabha. After Indira was assassinated the position as the Prime Minister was given to her son Rajiv Gandhi. Thus Rajiv became the Prime Minister in 1984, December 31. He made tremendous developments in the fields Telecommunication field in India. He could also resolve the problems in Punjab and Assam during his administrative period. But he had to face difficulties during the last phases of his administration due to controversies related to Bowforce.

Later in the investigations he was found to be innocent. But later the incidents took place which lead to his death. It was related to the LTT. The LTT and the Sri Lankan army were always in conflict. Rajiv sent the Indian army to sort out the problems as per the request of Lanka. The LTT were suppressed by the Indian Army but this resulted enmity on Rajiv Gandhi which finally resulted in his death.

It was on the 21st of May 1991, during the elections were on going and he was giving a speech at Sriperumpudur in Tamil Nadu, the sad incident took place. Rajiv was killed by an LTT who had a bomb on his body when exploded near him. Rajiv Gandhi was honored with Bharth Rratna after his death. Also Sonia Gandhi his wife became active in politics after this. Rajiv Gandhi was and always will be an inspiration in the mind of Indian youth.

Vishwanath Pradaph Singh-The eighth Prime Minister

V.P. Singh whose full name is Vishawanath Pradaph Singh was the eighth Prime Minister of India. He was born in the year 1931 in Allahabad. He did his higher education from the Varanasi, Pune and Allahabad Universities. According to the advice of one of his teachers V.P.Singh took degree in both Law and Economics. But his interests were different and he liked nuclear physics. His aim was to become a research scientist in the atomic research center in Trombha.

After his M.A and L.L.B he joined B.S.C. Then he was at the age of 30. He passed both Physics and Chemistry and Mathematics with first class only. In 1971 he was elected to the Loksabha. He was the central defense minister from 1976 till 1977. In 1980 he became the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister. He again became the defense minister in 1983.

The finance ministry in 1984 when Rajiv was the Prime Minister was under him. It was only later he was made the defense Minister. In 1987 he gave rise to a new party called Jhanamorcha and the party succeeded in the election in 1989. In 1989 December 2, V.P.Singh became the Prime minister of India. But due to many controversies his administration did not last for long. He had to vacate his position in the year 1990, tenth of November.

But still then he continued his social services. He was affected with cancer and was in treatment for seventeen years after which he surrendered to death on the 27th of November 2008.

Chandrasekhar-The ninth Prime Minister

After the resignation of V.P.Singh, Chandrasekhar came in to power. He was a leader who wanted to know India better. It was on the 10th of November 1990, he became the Prime Minister of India. But he could only sit on the chair of the Prime Minister only for four months after which he resigned when congress was about to withdraw their support to the government. July 1st 1927 was the birth date of Chandrasekhar. The name of his father was Sadanandha Singh.

He was active in politics even during his time of education in Allahabad University. He came in to politics as a member of the People Socialist party. After this he reached the congress party. He opposed the internal problems of congress and publically protested against Indira Gandhi’s decision in declaring emergency in India. For this reason he was arrested and after he was released he joined the People Socialist party once again. He has also worked as the Janatha party president. He was 64 years old when he became the Prime Minister. He died in 2007 July 8th due to cancer.

P.V.Narasimha Rao-An all rounder

V.P.Narasimha Rao was born on 28th of June, 1921 in Karinagar district of Andhra Pradesh. He completed his degree in mathematics and Physics with high marks. He also achieved L.L.B and Sahityaratna after which he concentrated on studying different languages. It was during this time he was attracted to politics. He actively took part in many of the protests those were ongoing during that time. He who had immense knowledge was suddenly lifted to the position of congress president.

In 1956 Rao stood for elections and not so late, he was given the position of Vice Chairman of congress committee. He later became the Educational minister in Andhra and made many important reforms in that field. During this time a protest rouse and the protesters wanted the Chief Minister to resign. It was this that made Rao the Chief Minister. In 1973 he had to face strong oppositions on some land reforms made by him in the state and as a reason he had to resign from his position. But later he became the congress president and he became noticed in national politics.

He earned admire from Indira, the Prime Minister then and became a Central minister in 1980. He led many ministries including defense, human resource development, health, family welfare etc… In 1991 June 21st, Rao became the Prime Minister of India and completed his coarse of administration even though he didn’t had the optimum majority. He resigned after the next elections as congress didn’t succeed. This was an end to his political life. He died in the year 2004, November when he was 83 years old.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee- India's best Parliamentarian

Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the first Indian Prime Minister, from a non-congress party to complete his administrative period. Vajpayee was born on the 25th of December 1924. His birth place is Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh. He was the son of Krishna Bihari, a teacher and Krishna Devi. From childhood itself Vajpayee showed keen interest in the freedom struggle and even went to prison as a part of it.

He became a member of all India student’s federation in the year 1945 after which he earned an M.A degree. From 1948 he became totally dedicated to politics. It didn’t take him long to give rise to a new political party called Bharatiya Jhanasangham, in 1951. From 1968 he became its president too. It was this party which I today known as the Bharathiya Janatha Party. In 1955 Vajpayee first took part in the election. But he did not succeed.

Later it was in 1957 Vajpayee had his debut election victory. Following this he became a minister in 1977 in the Janatha government. Later in 1993 Vajpayee was selected as the Janatha party’s parliament leader and in 1999 this party gained majority. Vajpayee became the Prime Minister. During the time as the Prime Minister his efforts to strengthen the Indo-Pak relations were immense.

He also made several changes in aspects related to the Pokhran nuclear tests. Again in 2004 Vajpayee succeeded in Lucknow election with good majority. But the party didn’t. So A.B.Vajpayee had to resign from his position. He was also a good writer and a journalist. He was respected by the nation by awarding him with the Patmabushan in 1992. In 2005 he resigned from active politics.

H.D.Deve Gowda-The eleventh Prime Minister

H.D.Deve Gowda was born on 18th of May 1933 in Karnataka. During his childhood his desire was to become a contractor and after his schooling he did Civil engineering for fulfilling his desire. In 1959 Gowda joined the congress party and in1962 he was elected to the Karnataka Legislative Assembly. Later he left congress and joined the Janatha party.

He was a great farmer and loved being it throughout his life. 1987 was the year in which Gowda became a minister in Karnataka and in 1994 he became the Chief Minister of the state. 1996 june1st was the day when he pledged himself as the Prime Minister. This ministry had the support of many parties including Congress, C.P.M, C.P.I, D.M.K and many others. But Gowda could not complete his term, as Congress withdrew their support. In 2004, he gained victory in the Haasan, Karnataka with large majority.

I.K.Gujaral-The twelfth Prime Minister

I.K. Gujaral pledged as the Prime Minister of India in the year 1997, April 21st after Deve Gowda. He was born on the fourth of December in1919. He was the son of Avatar Narayanan Gujaral and Pushpa Gujaral. Also his brother was a famous artist Sateesh Gujaral. Both his parents were active in congress during his childhood. At the time of his studies he tried to inspire many of his friends to participate in the freedom struggle. He himself was an active participator of the freedom struggle and it didn’t took him long to get to the position of Lahore students union president.

He raised his voice against the British and he was an active participator of the Quit India movement. Gujaral was born in Thandlam city in Pakistan. But later he lived in India after the division of Pakistan from India. He settled in Delhi and was Municipal Vice Chairman there from 1959 to 1964. In 1964 he reached the Rajyasabha and after he joined Indira’s ministry he became famous.

He was at first asked to take care of the parliamentary issues. But later he got the Telecommunication broadcasting ministry to handle. As Indira declared the emergency in India, Gujaral left Congress and joined the Janatha party. Gujaral who reached the Loksabha in1989, became the foreign affairs minister in the V.P. Singh ministry. It was the resignation of Deve Gowda that made way for Gujaral to become the Prime Minister.

He continued in this position till 1998, when Vajpayee joined as the Prime Minister. He did not participate in the elections of 1999 and resigned from politics thereafter. He made tremendous contributions and reforms in the Indian film industry during his term as the Telecommunication broadcasting minister. His wife’s name is Sheela Gujaral.

Dr. Manmohan Singh- The fourteenth Prime Minister

Dr. Manmohan Singh is the Prime Minister of India who holds the record of being two times the Prime Minister continuously after Jawaharlal Nehru. He never was interested in politics from his childhood and he never had any political background. But he was an expert in Economics and that is what made him a finance minister at first and as he was at his very best in this position, that he was made the Prime Minister very soon. It was in Ghahil in Punjab he was born and his parents were Ghurmukh Singh and Amrith Kaur. He had his matriculation in 1948 and later passed his inter mediate, degree and post graduate degree, all with first rank.

His subject was economics. He had his PhD in economics from the Cambridge University and later joined Oxford for doing his D.Litt. He was only twenty four years at that time. He became the finance ministe for the first time in the ministry of Rao in 1991. He had also been in the positions of the Planning commission vice chairman, Reserve Bank Governor and also he had shown hi talent in many other positions. In 1990 when Chandrasekhar became the Prime Minister he became the finance advisor of the Prime Minister. Manmohan Singh became the Prime Minister quite unexpectedly.

After the election, the expected leader was Sonia Gandhi. But she wasn’t ready to take up the position and there Manmohan Singh was recommended. Congress again made the decision to keep Manmohan Singh as the Prime Minister after he successfully completed his five year term as the Prime Minister From 2004 May 22nd to 22nd May 2009.


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