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Indira Gandhi Of India Is The 1st Elected Woman Prime Minister In The World – OpEd

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By S. V. Kirubaharan

Indira Gandhi of India was the first elected woman Prime Minister in the world. She became the third Prime Minister of India on 24 January 1966.

Of course Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike of Ceylon/Sri Lanka was the first Woman Prime Minister – 21 July 1960, and continued until 1965.

She reached this position through the upper house of Parliament, the Senate. Then Senator M. P. de Zoysa stepped down, facilitating

Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike appointment as Senator.

Mrs Srimavo Bandaranayake contested in parliamentary elections for the first time, only in March 1965 in Attanagala. In this election, she polled

26,150 votes. The UNP candidate got 9,615 votes.

Soon after this election, the UNP formed the government in Ceylon/Sri Lanka and was in power until 1970.

At the same time Indira Gandhi became the Prime Minister of India in 1966.

She won the Parliament elections in 1967 in Rae Bareli Lok Sabha constituency in Uttar Pradesh.



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2 thoughts on “Indira Gandhi Of India Is The 1st Elected Woman Prime Minister In The World – OpEd

  • Avatar
    October 20, 2012 at 3:23 am
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    This article is factually incorrect.

    Mr. S W R D Bandaranaike husband of Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike was assassinated in 1959 (26 Sept).

    Mrs. Bandaranaiake took over leadership of the SLFP after his death and was appointed as a Senator.

    Elections were held in July 1960 and Mrs. Bandaranaike’s coalition Govt won elections and Mrs. Bandaranaiake became the WORLDS FIRST ELECTED PRIME MINISTER…. not Mrs. Indira Gandhi who came into power only 6 years later in 1966.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    October 20, 2012 at 7:24 pm
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    AFTER MR S W R D BANDARANAIKE DIED IN SEPTEMBER 1959 HIS POLITICAL PARTY WAS LED BY MR C P DE SILVA FOR A SHORT TIME -MR DE SILVA WAS ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE PARTY AND LED THE PARTY IN THE MARCH 1960 GENERAL ELECTION –THE PARTY FAILED TO GET A MAJORITY IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND MR DUDLEY SENANAYAKE FORMED A SHORT LIVED GOVERNMENT -THEN, THERE WERE ELECTIONS AGAIN IN JULY 1960 –AT THESE ELECTIONS, MRS BANDARANAIKE (WHO HAD JUST BEEN ELECTED PARTY PRESIDENT AS MR C P DE SILVA RESIGNED IN HER FAVOUR )LED THE PARTY AND THEY WON A MAJOR VICTORY -IN NEITHER THE MARCH OR JULY 1960 DID MRS BANDARANAIKE CONTEST A PARLIAMENTARY SEAT IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES –ON THE PARTY VICTORY IN JULY 1960 ,HER PARTY SECURED A BIG MAJORITY– SHE WAS THEN APPOINTED TO THE SENATE (NOT A PUBLICLY ELECTED BODY) AND BECAME PRIME MINISTER-FOR FIVE TEARS THEREAFTER, SHE REMAINED A MEMBER OF THE SENATE AND ALSO HELD THE OFFICE OF PRIME MINISTER –THE NEXT GENERAL ELECTION WAS HELD IN 1965 –THIS TIME , MRS BANDARANAIKE DID CONTEST AND DID WIN A SEAT IN THE PUBLICLY ELECTED HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES- BUT SHE BECAME LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION AS HER PARTY WAS DEFEATED -SHE REMAINED SO FOR FIVE YEARS AND THEN AGAIN LED HER PARTY TO VICTORY IN THE 1970 GENERAL ELECTIONS -AS A CONSEQUENCE. SHE BECAME PRIME MINISTER AGAIN UNTIL 1977-
    MY OWN RECOLLECTION IS THAT WHEN MRS INDIRA GANDHI WAS FIRST ELECTED PRIME MINISTER IN 1966 , SHE WAS ALSO NOT A MEMBER OF THE PUBLICLY ELECTED INDIAN HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES ( LOK SABHA )-SHE HAD BEEN A MEMBER OF THE RAJYA SABHA ( NOT PUBLICLY ELECTED BUT INDIRECTLY ELECTED THROUGH THE LEGISTLATURES OF THE INDIAN STATES ) SINCE AUGUST 1964-
    ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS , WHENEVER PEOPLE REFERED TO HER AS THE “FIRST WOMAN PRIME MINISTER IN THE WORLD “, MRS GANDHI WENT OUT OF HER WAY TO SAY SHE WAS THE SECOND -APPARENTLY, SHE DID NOT FIND IT NECESSARY TO GET INTO THE HAIR-SPLITTING THAT BOTH S V KIRUBHARAN AND SHENALI
    ARE ENGAGING IN THROUGH YOUR COLUMNS !!!

    Reply

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