Encyclopedia > Sonia Gandhi

  Article Content

Sonia Gandhi

Sonia Gandhi (née Maino) is the leader of the Indian National Congress party in India. She was born an Italian citizen. She met Rajiv Gandhi, who later became Prime Minister of India, while he was studying abroad at Cambridge University in England. They were married in 1968, after which Sonia took up residence in India.

She accepted Indian citizenship in 1983 (the long interval is still a matter of some controversy). She did not enter politics until after her husband's assassination on May 21, 1991. Following his death, she received great pressure from the Congress party to enter politics, to continue the Congress' dynastic tradition of being led by a member of the Jawaharlal Nehru-Indira Gandhi family.

In 1998 she formally entered politics, assuming the helm of the decaying Congress party and declaring herself a candidate for Prime Minister. Largely through her family name, she was able to draw large crowds and nearly single-handedly revitalized the party. However, she remained a somewhat enigmatic figure, and her opposition (chiefly the Bharatiya Janata Party) constantly played off the fact that she was foreign-born and was not a fluent Hindi speaker until she entered politics, frequently asserting that she had no qualifications other than her name.

See also: Indian National Congress, India



All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

 
  Search Encyclopedia

Search over one million articles, find something about almost anything!
 
 
  
  Featured Article
East Hampton North, New York

... size is 2.47 and the average family size is 3.07. In the town the population is spread out with 22.3% under the age of 18, 6.7% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, ...

 
 
 
This page was created in 38.8 ms