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How Rajiv Gandhi Was Assassinated 31 Years Ago And Some Facts About Him

How Rajiv Gandhi Was Assassinated
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Born to the then Prime Minister of India, mother Indira Gandhi, and father, Feroz Gandhi in the year 1944, became the Prime Minister of India after his mother’s death in the year of 1984. But, destiny had other plans for the young mind. Similar to his mother, he too was assassinated in the year 1991 near Chennai during an election rally. Read here to know how Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated and what was the reason behind the same. Also, read to know some facts about Rajiv Gandhi.

Why Was Rajiv Gandhi Assassinated

Before jumping on how Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated, let us understand the events that led to this horrific event that shook the entire nation! To keep it precise, the war in Sri Lanka led the Sri Lankan Tamils to escape the situation to India, but conflicts arose between Rajiv Gandhi and Prabhakaran, a Sri Lankan Tamil when Rajiv Gandhi sent peacekeeping forces to tackle the war situation. 

This was the main reason behind a series of events that finally led to the assassination of the youngest prime minister of India. But, how did Rajiv Gandhi die?

Rajiv Gandhi’s Death Date

On 21st May, in the year 1991, the then Prime Minister of India, who was also the third generation Prime Minister in his family after his maternal grandfather Jawaharlal Nehru and mother Indira Gandhi, was assassinated near Chennai in Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu by the LTTE member Dhanu. 

How Was Rajiv Gandhi Assassinated 

Before Rajiv Gandhi’s death date, a series of planning took place by Prabhakaran and others which led to the horrific killing of Rajiv Gandhi and others in close vicinity to him. So, how Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated? 

Feared by the peacekeeping forces of India in Tamil Nadu, the LTTE decided to end the life of Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Sivarasan was handed the task. But, soon the mastermind started sending troops to India disguised as refugees to keep an eye on the existing Indian situation. But, little did they know that Indian agencies were aware that something horrific was about to uncover! While Sivarasan aided help from Kittu to talk with Muthuraja, to help LTTE members from Sri Lanka, the Intelligence Bureau of India was after them. 

Meanwhile, Prabhakaran ordered his subordinates to reconcile with Rajiv Gandhi and make him believe that they are willing to make peace with India. Followed by this, Sivarasan came to India after his brief stay in Sri Lanka with Dhanu and made plans to assassinate Rajiv Gandhi during his election rally in Tamil Nadu. 

The final blow came when Rajiv Gandhi went rallying in Sriperumbudur on 21st May 1991. Disguised as a journalist, Prabhakaran with Dhanu, who went up to touch Rajiv Gandhi’s feet, was hindered by a policewoman but they kept moving towards their aim. While Dhanu put a Garland over the rallying Prime Minister, she bent down to touch his feet and switched the button of the bomb that was hidden in her waist, which ultimately ended the life of Rajiv Gandhi among others who were present! 

Facts About Rajiv Gandhi 

On May 21 in 1991, Rajiv Gandhi, Prime Minister of India (1984-89), was assassinated in a suicide bombing attack. Below are some unknown facts about Rajiv Gandhi:

Facts About Rajiv Gandhi
  1. Before politics, he was a trained pilot who had no interest in joining politics but after his mother’s death, he followed the footsteps of his elders and became the Prime Minister of India from 1984-89. 
  2. Besides being a professional pilot, he was interested in photography! After his assassination, Sonia Gandhi, his wife released his photography book which had photographs clicked by the late Prime Minister. 
  3. He always fought for anti-corruption and peace. For this, he was named Mr. Clean. 
  4. After his death, he was posthumously awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1991 by the Indian Government. 
  5. He was a very influential and kind-hearted person who worked to expand the scope of education in India. He established the Navodaya Vidyalaya System for the education of the rural class. 


After Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated in a suicide bombing attack, the Supreme Court imprisoned some associated with his assassination, and one of them is released in 2022 after 31 years of his arrest. 

For more related information, visit Current Affairs – Trending Reader.

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