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Rajiv Gandhi’s 75th Birth Anniversary: Know His 5 Attempts At Modernizing India

20 August 2019

Ommcom News

Bhubaneswar: Today marks the 75th birth anniversary of India’s youngest Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. He was accorded Bharat Ratna posthumously and had made some sincere efforts to push a modern India into 21st century.

Nicknamed “Mr Clean” for his attempts at fight against corruption, Gandhi also is known for his strive towards modernization of India. Let’s have a look at a few of his achievements.


National Policy on Education was aimed at modernizing and expanding higher education program across India. The policy covers elementary education to colleges in both rural and urban India. Rajiv Gandhi also founded a Central Government based institution namely Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya System in 1986 for the upliftment of the rural section of the society providing them free residential education from 6th till 12th class.

Information and Technology

Former PM Rajiv Gandhi also played a pivotal role in revolutionizing Information and Technology. His ideas led to setting-up of the Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited, popularly known as MTNL. Because of Rajiv Gandhi's efforts, the PCO (public call office) revolution took place. PCO booth connected even the rural areas to the world outside.


In his vision for modern India, Rajiv Gandhi promoted science and technology and other related industries. The Indian Railways got a huge boost in form of computerized railway tickets.

Voting Age

Leading the world’s largest democracy at the age of 40, Rajiv Gandhi strongly advocated youth’s participation in building of a new India. The legal voting age was reduced from 21 to 18 during his tenure as the 61st Amendment Act of the Constitution was passed in 1989.

Foreign Policies

 The young Gandhi scion made a genuine attempt to resolve the Tamil issue in Sri Lanka. The Indo-Sri Lanka Peace Accord was an accord signed in Colombo on 29 July 1987, between Gandhi and then Sri Lankan President J. R. Jayewardene. It mandated to resolve Sri Lankan Civil War. The Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) was sent to handle the insurgency by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). India lost about 1250 soldiers and it ended with assassination of Rajiv Gandhi by the LTTE suicide bomber.