On 15 August 2017, India celebrates its 70 years of Independence. Prime Minister Narendra Modi hoists the flag at the capital. India has seen a major revolution in every walk of life since the dawn of Independence. Let us ourselves have a glance at the major events that have shaped India as it is today.
- India Gains Independence. 15 August 1947 India Gets Freedom from the British and becomes Dominion of India. The eve of independence saw partition of the country and Dominion of Pakistan was born on 14 August 1947
- First Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru took office on 15 August 1947
- The Radcliffe Line, the border between Union of India and Dominion of Pakistan is revealed on 17 August 1947
- Maharajah of Jammu & Kashmir accedes to India on 26 October 1947
- Orissa province accedes to India on 1 January 1948
- Himachal Pradesh created on 15 April 1948
- Assasination of Mahatma Gandhi On 30 Jan 1948 by Nathuram Godse
- India wins its fourth Olympic Gold medal in hockey on 12 September 1948
- 14 September 1949 Hindi Day as India’s Constituent Assembly adopts Hindi as an official language
- Administration of territory of Manipur taken over by Indian government on 15 October 1949
- Tripura accedes to Indian union on 15 October 1949
- Crease fire between India and Pak.
- Constitution Assembly census the constitution of India.
- India becomes a sovereign democratic republic on 26 Jan 1950 Dr. Rajendra Prasad elected as the first President of India. Constitution of India goes into effect
- Earthquake shakes India with a magnitude of 8.6 on 15 August 1950. 1,500 to 3,000 people killed
- Iron Man of India Deputy Prime Minister Sardar Vallabhai Patel passes away on 15 December 1950
- Birth of first Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, West Bengal in May 1950
- First general election of independent India from 25th Oct 1951 to 21st Feb, 1952 including the then 22 states
- India wins First Test Cricket Match against England at Madras (Now Chennai)
- First five year plan comes into effect
- Andhra, the first state established on purely linguistic basis on 1 October 1953
- Air India Nationalization
- French settlements like Pondicherry merge with India;Pondichéry, Karikal, Mahé – 1 November 1954; Chandernagore – 26 June 1949 but merged with West Bengal on 2 October 1954
- Fabrication of National Film Awards. First awards given on 10 October 1954
- Untouchability Offence Act Bill passes on 8 May 1955
- States reorganization bill based on language/linguistics comes into effect in 1956
- India’s first atomic reactor Apsara went to criticality on 4 August 1956. Built in Bhabha Atomic Research Center (BARC) in collaboration with the United Kingdom (which also provided the initial fuel supply consisting of 80 percent enriched uranium)
- B R Ambedhkar Chief architect of the Indian constitution passes away on 6 December 1956
- Decimal system of coinage introduced
- The President Rajendra Prasad inaugarates the first blast furnace ‘Parvati’ in Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP), Rourkela, Odisha the First integrated Steel Plant, on 3 February 1959 which subsequently becomes a part of Steel Authority of India (SAIL)
- Dalai Lama Tibetan spiritual leader escapes to India on 31 March 1959
- Bombay State bifurcates and splits in Maharashtra and Gujarat
- Portugese settlements on 18-19 December 1961. Indian army conquers Goa from the Portugese
- Birth of first IIM Calcutta and IIM Ahemdabad
- Ceasefire announced as India-China go on War. Border dispute – China attacked India. India loses the war, China withdraws 20 October 1962 to 21 November 1962
- First Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru passes away on 27 May 1964. Gulzarilal Nanda was acting Prime Minister until 9 June 1964. Lal Bahadur Shastri becomes the next Prime Minister
- Weather rocket fired from Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS) located in Thumba, Thiruvananthapuram launches a stage-two rocket
- 26 January 1965 Hindi becomes official language of India
- 24 February 1965 English becomes the associate language in Central Government dealings as well as in non-Hindi speaking states
- War breaks out between India and Pakistan over Kashmir 5 August 1965 till 23 September 1965. Ceasefire follows. India defeat Pakistan
- First Femina Miss India contest takes place
- Daily TV series show begins
- 11 January 1966 the second Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri dies in Tashkent. Indira Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru’s daughter succeeds as the third Prime Minister and also the first woman Prime Minister of India
- 1 November 1966 sees the formation of Punjab and Haryana as well the Union Territory of Chandigarh
- 13 May 1967 Zakir Husain is elected as President of India. Varahagiri Venkata Giri is appointed as the Vice President of India
- President Zakir Husain passes away on 3 May 1969. V. V. Giri becomes the acting President till 20 July 1969 post which Muhammad Hidayatullah becomes acting President till24 August 1969. V.V.Giri, then becomes the President of India
- Indira Gandhi nationalizes 14 leading banks. ISRO and CISF came into existence
- Indian National Congress splits into two, Indira Gandhi leads one fraction and Morarji Desai leads the other.
- Bajaj Auto rolls out its 100,000th vehicle
- Second major war between India and Pakistan breaks out from 3 December 1971 to 17 December 1971 over East Pakistan which ends after 90,000 Pakistani troops surrender. The new nation of Independent Bangladesh is created.
- Indian population count reaches 54.78 crores
- Twenty-year treaty of friendship signed with Soviet Union
- Manipur gets statehood on 21 January 1972
- Formation of Karnataka State on 1 November 1973
- Longest rail service Mangalore-Delhi inaugurated
- Nuclear tests performed in Pokhran India’s first nuclear weapon explosion on May 18, 1974 with codename Smiling Buddha and MEA designation: Pokhran-I
- Sagar Sarat Off Bombay High the first well in India struck oil
- ARYABHATTA the first Indian satellite launched into Earth’s orbit from the soviet cosmotron on 19 April 1975
- SITE instructional program launched
- Sikhism becomes part of India on 26 May 1975
- Prime Minister Indira Gandhi declares emergency after being found guilty of electoral malpractice on 26 June 1975 to 21 March 1977 during which she suspends Constitution and fundamental rights, the press is censored and 100,000 are jailed.
- India wins Hockey World Cup in 1975
- Marital ages increases to 21 years for men and 18 for women. Sanjay Gandhi, son of Prime minister Indira Gandhi initiates a family planning programme facilitating vasectomy for men and tubal ligation for women on 16 April 1976. This was either for payment or under coercive conditions. People strongly backlashed agaisnt this failed programme.
- Bill passes for abolishing Bounded-labor
- President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed dies on 11 February 1977 and Vice President Basappa Danappa Jatti becomes acting President of India till 25 July 1977
- Nehru Planetarium commissions on 3 March 1977
- Emergency lifts off and Lok Sabha elections take place on 24 March 1977. The first non-Congress government Janata Party sweeps to power. Morarji Desai becomes Prime Minister.
- India’s first super cyclonic storm hits southeast coast between 14 November 1977 and 20 November 1977. Over 14,000 people die. The storm disrupts life for 5.4 million people in 830 villages as well as cropland.
- On 1 January 1978 Air India Flight 855 crashes into the Arabian Sea after takeoff from Sahar International Airport (now Chatrapati Shivaji International Airport) in Bombay (now Mumbai). Kills everyone on board
- Karakoram highway (ladakh) opened in 1978
- Rohini 200 launched from Kerala
- Mother Teresa gets noble peace prize
- Indira Gandhi returns to power heading Congress party and becomes Prime Minister on 14 January 1980. Sanjay Gandhi died in a plane crash.
- The Indian Hockey team wins the Gold medal in the Olympics after 16 years
- National Aluminium Company incorporated as a public sector enterprise of the Government of India.
- India’s first telecom satellite APPLE launched from French Guinea
- India hosts Asiad Games in Delhi
- India wins the third World Cup in cricket on 25 June 1983 at Lords, England under Kapil Dev
- Maruti Suzuki cars hit the market costing Rs 35000
- Prime Minister Indira Gandhi orders troops to carry out Operation Blue Star at Amritsar‘s Harimandir Sahib, the Golden Temple Sikhdom’s holiest shrine between 1 June 1984 and 10 June 1984. More than 12,000 casualitites
- Prime Minister Indira Gandhi assassinated by her own Sikh bodyguards on 31 October 1984. Her son Rajiv Gandhi takes charge as the Prime Minister.
- Bhopal gas tragedy causes havoc in midnight of 2-3 December 1984. Deadly gas leaks from a pesticide plant owned by U.S.-based Union Carbide Corp in the central city of Bhopal, claiming about 6,500 lives and injuring 20,000 in the world’s worst industrial disaster.
- Air India Flight 182 blows up and kills everyone on board on 23 June 1985. by Sikh nationalists. On its second leg on its Toronto-Montreal-London-Delhi-Bombay flight when it explodes off the coast of Ireland by Sikh nationalists.
- Parliament passes The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act
- Rajiv Gandhi starts telecom and computer revolution in 1985
- Geet Sethi wins World Armature Billiards Championship
- The Special Protection Group is created
- Parliament establishes Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) by an Act
- Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (prevention) Act (TADA) passes
- Texas Instruments, a Multinational corporation, starts its India operations in Bangalore and helps create infrastructure to export software via satellite communications from India for the first time.
- VSNL incorporated under the Indian Companies Act on 1 April 1956.
- Shah Bano case and enactment of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act, 1986. The most controversial provision of the Act was that it gave a Muslim woman the right to maintenance for the period of iddat (about three months) after the divorce, and shifted the onus of maintaining her to her relatives or the Wakf Board. The Act was seen as discriminatory as it denied divorced Muslim women the right to basic maintenance which women of other faiths had recourse to under secular law
- Rajiv Gandhi orders unlocking of disputed Ram Mandir at Ayodhya
- India deploys troops for peacekeeping operation in Sri Lanka’s ethnic conflic
- Bofors scam rocks India
- The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission is set up under the Consumer Protection Act of 1986.
- Remote sensing satellite IRS-1A launched
- Voting age reduces to 18
- Viswanathan Anand becomes India’s first Grandmaster in Chess
- Insurgency breaks out in Kashmir Valley, inflaming tensions with Pakistan in January. New Delhi dissolves the state assembly and imposes direct rule.
- Captain N. BHASIN becomes the youngest pilot in the world to command a jet aircraft
- AKASH missile (surface to air) test fired
- Cyclone creates havoc southern state of Andhra Pradesh in May, kills 1,000 people.
- Tamil suicide bombers assasinate former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on 21 May 1991
- Polling for the 10th Lok Sabha
- New industrial policy for Liberalization of Economy
- Eight five year plan implemented
- Rapid Action Force established by Union Home Ministry on 11 December 1991
- Workers of the VHP (Vishva Hindu Parishad) tear down a 16th-century mosque Babri Masjid located in Ayodhya, in Northern India on 6 December 1992 as the mosque is believed to have been built over a shrine which exhorted the small piece of land as Ram Janmabhoomi – the birthplace of Lord Rama. Sparks off nationwide communal riots claiming 3,000 lives
- Government of India establishes SEBI, stock exchange regulator
- Supreme Court of India upholds 27% quota for backward classes in government jobs, subject to exclusion of creamy layers.
- The All Parties Hurriyat Conference is formed in Kashmir on 9 March 1992
- A series of bomb blasts, thought to be planted by Muslim underworld figures, shock the country’s commercial capital of Bombay, killing some 260 people on 12 March 1992
- Severe Earthquake damages in Maharashtra
- Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Limited forms on 5 March 1993
- Machine-gun fire across the Line of Control in Kashmir in late January as tensions with Pakistan rise sharply and there is an exchange of mortar
- First heart transplant at AIIMS Delhi on 3 August 1994
- Susmita Sen wins Miss Universe title
- Aishwariya Rai is crowned as Miss World
- BJP leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee is sworn in as prime minister on 16 May 1995. However, he fails to muster a parliamentary majority and resigns on 28 May 1995
- On 1 June 1996 H.D. Deve Gowda is sworn in at the head of the United Front, a coalition of 13 parties which Congress supports but does not join. Gowda’s new cabinet brings in powerful regional figures, mixing low-caste and minority Muslim leaders with weathered veterans of the socialist movement.
- On 28 June 1996 Communists join the Government for the first time since independence.
- On 12 November 1996 A Saudi Arabian Boeing 747 jumbo jet and a Kazakhstan Ilyushin cargo plane collide near New Delhi, killing 349 people in the world’s deadliest mid-air collision.
- Congress withdraws support from the United Front on 30 March 1996 accusing Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda of poor leadership.
- Inder Kumar Gujral, a new leader acceptable to Congress, is sworn in as prime minister on 21 April 1996
- Lander Paes wins Bronze in Atlantic Olympics
- India entered global market for satellite launch with PSLV D3 and IRS P3
- R. Narayanan is elected President, defeating T.N. Seshan on 14 July 1997 and takes charge on 25 July 1997
- Queen Elizabeth II pays a state visit to India from 12 to 18 October 1997
- Prasar Bharati is established on 23 November 1997
- Prime Minister Gujral resigns after the Congress party withdrew support from his government on 28 November 1997
- The President orders mid-term elections on 4 December 1997
- TRAI (telecom regulator) is established
- Sonia Gandhi is elected as Congress President on 14 March 1998
- Vajpayee stuns the world by conducting three underground nuclear tests close to the Pakistan border on 11 March 1998. These are followed, two days later, by two more tests at the same site. The move provokes international outrage and punitive sanctions from the United States, Japan, and others.
- Cyclone hits coastal areas of the western state of Gujarat on 9 June 1998 and kills over 1,120 people
- India and Pakistan end their first peace talks in a year with agreement to meet again next February in New Delhi on 18 October 1998
- The National Highway Development Project is launched.
- At the end of a ground-breaking visit to Pakistan by Prime Minister Vajpayee, the two countries agree to work harder on their Kashmir dispute and announce steps to defuse tension and reduce risk of nuclear war on 21 February 1998
- India successfully test-fires a longer-range model of its Agni ballistic missile on 11 April 1999
- Kargil war breaks out with Pakistan in 1999
- Life insurance privatized
- Reliance Industries, the country’s biggest private company, announces plans to enter into the information technology industry in June 2000. A new subsidiary, Reliance Infocomm, will oversee the laying of fibre-optic cables to connect the top 115 cities to the Internet.
- India joins a select group of six countries on 28 June 2000 when it commences regular summits with the European Union. The other five countries which have regular consultations with the EU are Canada, China, Japan, Russia and the U.S..
- The first passenger rail link between India and Bangladesh in 26 years opens in July 2000. The line between Benapole in Bangladesh and Petrapole in West Bengal was closed due to lack of commercial interest in 1974.
- On 15 July 2000, Prime Minister Vajpayee announces that long-distance domestic phone lines will be fully deregulated from August 15 to help boost the country’s information technology industry.
- Inaugaration of Bharat Sanchar Nigam (BSNL)
- Chhattisgarh becomes the 26th State carved out of Madhya Pradesh on 1 November 2000.
- Buddhadev Bhattacharya is sworn in as the new chief minister of West Bengal following the retirement of Jyoti Basu, the world’s longest-serving elected communist leader on 6 November 2000
- Uttaranchal, carved out of Uttar Pradesh becomes India‘s 27th state on 9 November 2000
- On 15 November 2000, Jharkhand, carved out of Bihar, becomes India‘s 28th state.
- Three months of extreme embarrassment for the state governments of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka end when the notorious aging bandit Veerappan suddenly releases an even older veteran actor, Rajkumar, he had held captive since August. The authorities, keenly aware of the popularity of Rajkumar, agreed in August to grant some of Veerappan’s demands which included the official recognition of Tamil as a language used in business in Karnataka, and the release of prisoners held under strict anti-terrorist laws. It remains unclear what exactly prompted the release of Rajkumar.
- Priyanka Chopra wins the Miss World title on 1 December 2000
- Calcutta reverts to its precolonial name and officially becomes Kolkata on 1 January 2000
- 150 million children across India are immunized against polio in one of the largest vaccination projects ever undertaken.
- Population hits 1 billion
- A massive earthquake, measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale, strikes the northwestern state of Gujarat on 26 January 2001 with an estimate of 30,000 lives. Several other earthquakes hit the north and north -western parts of the country.
- The country’s first ever private FM radio station – Radio City – is launched in Bangalore on 4 July 2001
- India‘s first police office dedicated specifically to Internet crimes opens in Bangalore in September 2002
- February 28 – Violent sectarian clashes break out in the Gujarati city of Ahmadabad leaving over 500 Muslims and Hindus dead on 28 February 2002. The riots came after the death the previous day of 58 Hindus whose train was deliberately set on fire by Muslim militants in Godhra, near Vadodara (the exact circumstances remain unclear).
- Moderate Kashmiri separatist leader Abdul Ghani Lone is assassinated on 21 May 2002. On the same day Vajpayee begins a five-day visit to Kashmir. In a martial speech on May 22, he says that “a new chapter of victory and triumph will be written in the history books soon”.
- Police confirm they have found the body of H. Nagappa on 8 December 2002, the former Karnataka minister kidnapped by Veerappan in August. Veerappan issues a taped statement saying that Nagappa has been accidentally killed in a shootout with the police.
- Prime Minister Vajpayee opens the first stretch of Delhi‘s new metro system 24 December 2003
- 52 killed in two bomb blasts in Mumbai, India on 25 August 2004
- On 26 December 2004, the strongest earthquake in 40 years originates from the Indian Ocean off the west coast of Sumatra island in Indonesia, measuring 9.0 on the Richter Scale and creating tsunami tidal waves that sweep across much of the coastlines of South Asia. More than 15,000 reported killed in India and 250,000 across the globe.
- Rajkumar, 77, Kannada film actor dies on 12 April 2006 creating havoc in the city of Bangalore
- Medical doctors started strike against in Central government in May 2002 decision on reservation for OBC (other backword classes) in Medical Institution
- A series of coordinated bomb attacks strikes several commuter trains in Mumbai, India during evening rush hour on 11 July 2006.
- Music composer dies Naushad dies at the age of 86 on 5 May 2006
- Shehnai musician and Bharat Ratna winner Ustad Bismillah Khan dies at the age of 90 on 21 August 2006
- Hrishikesh Mukherjee, 84, Hindi film director passes away on 27 August 2007
- Taj Mahal becomes one of the 7 Wonders of the World again on 7 July 2007
- Pratibha Patil becomes the First lady President of India on 25 July 2007
- Cricket team India wins the First Twenty20 World Cup Finals beating Pakistan by 5 runs on 24 September 2007
- Inaugaration of Hyderabad International Airport
- India test fires nuclear-capable surface-to-surface missile Agni-I having a range of 700 to 900 km on 23 March 2008
- India sets a world record by sending 10 satellites into orbit in a single launch 28 April 2008. Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C9) successfully puts all the 10 satellites into orbit
- A series of seven bomb blasts rock Bangalore, India killing 2 and injuring 20 and on the next day, a number of bomb blasts in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, kills 45 and injures over 160 people on 25 July 2008
- 2008 Naina Devi temple stampede: A stampede at a Hindu temple at Naina Devi in Bilaspur, Himachal Pradesh, kills 162 and injures 400 on 3 August 2008
- On 12 October 2008, Pope Benedict XVI announces the canonization of Sister Alphonsa Muttathupadathu, the first woman of Indian origin to be canonized as a saint by the Roman Catholic Church, and the first canonized saint of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church
- 2008 Mumbai attacks: 175 people were killed and over 308 wounded in more than ten coordinated shooting and bombing between 26-29 November 2008
- On 1 January 2009 National Investigation Agency (NIA) Bill and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment (UAPA) Bill, the new anti-terror regime come into force
- India approves a £1.7-billion plan to launch its first astronauts into outer space by 2015 on 23 February 2009
- India and the United States sign a defence pact on 20 July 2009
- On 26 July 2009, India launches its first nuclear submarine, the INS Arihant
- India announces it is to create a new state, Telangana, out of Andhra Pradesh on 10 December 2009
- On 13 December 2009, India successfully test fires its nuclear-capable “Dhanush” missile off the Orissa coast
- Major rail accidents in Uttar Pradesh throughout January 2010
- Attacks on Indian students in Australia on 9 January 2010
- The last native of India’s Andaman Islands fluent in the Aka-Bo language dies, rendering the language extinct on 5 February 2010
- India test fires two short range missiles, the Dhanush and Prithvi II on 27 March 2010
- India hosts XIX Commonwealth Games in Delhi from 3 to 14 October 2010
- Saina Nehwal clinches the 2011 Swiss Open Grand Prix for two consecutive years 2011 and 2012
- India wins the 2011 Cricket World Cup on 2 April 2011
- Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announces aid of Rs.225 billion for African countries to develop infrastructure facilities on the eve of IInd Indo-Africa summit in May 2011
- Santosh Trophy held in Assam from 6-30 May 2011
- In June 2011, India gets first e-waste management rules
- India ranks 123rd on the global environment index
- India rekindles Football through 2011 Durand Cup and 2011 Indian Federation Cup
- In October 2011, F1 2011 Race comes to India at the Buddh International Circuit, Noida
- 7 billionth baby born on 31 October 2011, Nargis in Uttar Pradesh
- President Prathibha Patil inaugurates new SHAR Mission Control Centre on 3 January 2012
- India hosts 4th BRICS summit at New Delhi on 29 March 2012. Heads of state of Brazil, Russia, China and South-Africa are hosted by India
- On 19 April 2012 India successfully test fires 5000 km range Agni-V ICBM
- London Olympics: This was India’s most successful Olympics in terms of total medal tally, having won a total of 6 medals (0 gold, 2 silver and 4 bronze) on 12 August 2012
- Sachin Tendulkar retired from International Cricket on 13 February 2013
- 2012 DA14 asteroid passes by the Earth over eastern Indian Ocean on 15 February 2013
- India shuts down its public telegram service on 14 July 2013
- On 2 June 2014, According to Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014, Indian state of Andhra Pradesh was split in two new states Telangana and Andhra Pradesh with Hyderabad remaining the joint capital for 10 years. This made 29 states and 7 seven union territories in India
- ISRO launched PSLV-C23 with 5 foreign satellites : SPOT 7, AISat, NLS7.1 (CAN-X4), NLS7.2 (CAN-X5) and VELOX 1, from Sriharikota on 30 June 2014
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi launches Swachh Bharat Abhiyan cleanliness drive on 2 October 2014
- The 10th edition of Aero India takes place at Yelahanka Air Force Station near Bangalore from 18-22 February 2015
- National Electoral Roll Purification and Authentication Programme launches by the Election Commission of India on 3 March 2015
- On 23 March 2015, Government announces Amaravathi as the new capital of Andhra Pradesh , to be built near Thullur
- On 5 April 2015, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister, Dharmendra Pradhan, launches the Give up LPG subsidy campaign urging rich people to give up LPG subsidy
- On 25 April 2015, a 7.9 Richter scale earthquake occurrs in Nepal. Parts of north India affected
- The Akash missile inducted into the Indian Army on 5 May 2015
- International Yoga Day on 21 June every year from 2015
- India launches its first space observatory Astrosat on 28 September 2015
- ISRO send 20 satellites in space on PSLV-XL on 22 June 2016
- On 3 August 2016, Parliament passes Goods and Services Tax (India) Bill
- 8 November 2016, Prime Minister modi announces Demonetisation. The Indian Government withdraws Rs500 and Rs1000 banknotes with immediate effect. New notes will be issued to the nation. Causes political uproar
- Supreme Court of India orders cinemas to play national anthem before films on 30 November 2016
These are just some of the major events that have taken place till 2017 Independence Day. Some of these events have vastly affected our lives whilst some of them make us proud to be Indians. Let us salute each and every freedom fighter who struggled for our Independence, every Politician who has helped India get its name and fame and every individual who has shown excellence to make India Proud. Let us always remember the duty towards our great country. JAI HIND!!!
Most of the information has been taken from Google through websites like News18, Quora, BBC, Festivals of India, Wikipedia and a few other blogs. Kindly like the post if you enjoyed it and bring in your opinion.