75 landmark events that shaped India

First five-year plan presented on July 9, 1951, by then PM Jawaharlal Nehru

On July 25 this year, Droupadi Murmu became India's first tribal and second woman president
On July 25 this year, Droupadi Murmu became India's first tribal and second woman president

Compiled by Shubhangi Shah


Kashmir’s accession to India
Faced with a threat from Pakistani Pathans, Kashmir chose to join India on Oct 26, 1947


1st five-year plan
First five-year plan presented on July 9, 1951, by then PM Jawaharlal Nehru


1st general elections
Independent India’s first general elections held between Oct 25, 1951 and March 27, 1952

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Indus Water Treaty
Indus Water Treaty signed between India and Pakistan on Sept 19, 1960

Green Revolution 
After reeling under food scarcity for years, India got respite in the 1960s with the ‘Green Revolution’


China invades
China invaded India in east Ladakh and then North-East Frontier Agency (now Arunachal Pradesh) on Oct 20, 1962


1st rocket launched 
India launched its first rocket on Nov 21, 1963, marking the beginning of Indian space programme


Air India nationalised
Founded as Tata Airlines in 1932 by JRD Tata, Air India nationalised in 1953


Indo-Pak war
Kashmir infiltrated by Pakistan in August 1965, leading to war with India that ended on Sept 23, 1965


1st planned city commissioned
Chandigarh commissioned to be built as first planned city of independent India, to serve as capital of Punjab and to resettle refugees from Pakistan

1950Constitution adopted
Adopted by Constituent Assembly on Nov 29, 1949, Constitution of India came into effect on Jan 26, 1950


1st IIT begins journey
First Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) opened in Kharagpur, West Bengal, on Aug 18, 1951


SBI nationalised
Centre and RBI on July 1, 1955, assumed joint ownership of the Imperial Bank of India, then the largest commercial enterprise in the country; renamed as State Bank of India


LIC formed
As many as 245 insurance companies merged to form LIC on Sept 1, 1956

1st AIIMS set up
First All India Institute of Medical Sciences founded in New Delhi on June 2, 1956


Decimalisation of Indian currency
Indian currency went decimal on April 1, 1957; happened a decade after independence


Dalai Lama in India
Faced with Chinese aggression, the 14th Dalai Lama arrived in India on March 30, 1959
Doordarshan set up 
Public service broadcaster Doordarshan set up on Sept 15, 1959


First woman PM
Indira Gandhi took oath as India’s first woman PM on Jan 24, 1966


ISRO founded
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) founded on Aug 15, 1969 with Dr Vikram Sarabhai at its helm
Nationalisation of 14 banks Fourteen banks, including Allahabad Bank, UCO Bank, BoB, PNB, BoM and Central Bank of India, nationalised on July 19, 1969


White revolution
India started ramping up its milk production in 1970 with Dr Verghese Kurien as its architect


Liberation of Bangladesh
Third war between India and Pakistan ended on Dec 16, 1971, paving the way for an independent Bangladesh


Pokhran I nuclear test
Codenamed Operation Smiling Buddha, India conducted its first nuclear test in Pokhran, on May 18, 1974


On June 25, 1975, Emergency declared by then PM Indira Gandhi


Janata Party in power
Morarji Desai became India’s first non-Cong PM after Janata Party won the 1977 LS polls

1982India hosts Asian Games
After 1951, Asian Games returned to India on Dec 1, 1982; held in Delhi


Cricket world cup victory
India lifted the cricket world cup trophy for the first time on June 25, 1983, defeating West Indies


1st Indian to enter space
On April 2, 1984, Sqn Ldr Rakesh Sharma became the first Indian to enter space aboard a Soyuz T11 spacecraft

Indira Gandhi assassinated Following Operation Blue Star in the thick of militancy in Punjab, then PM Indira Gandhi assassinated on Oct 31, 1984


India in digital age
Rajiv Gandhi as PM is credited with ushering in the IT revolution through the 1980s


Shah Bano case
In its April 1985 judgment in Shah Bano case, SC allowed Muslim women to receive alimony from their husbands after divorce 


Voting age reduced to 18
Constitution (Sixty-first Amendment) Act, 1988, implemented on March 28, 1989, reducing voting age to 18 years


Mandal Commission 
On Aug 7, 1990, Mandal Commission proposal for 27% reservation of OBCs in government jobs announced, leading to protests

Pandit exodus 
Under shadow of militancy in Kashmir valley, exodus of Kashmiri pandits started on Jan 19, 1990, and continued for several months

Advani’s rath yatra
Then BJP president LK Advani embarked on a rath yatra between Sep 25 and Oct 30, 1990, from Gujarat to Ayodhya for construction of a Ram temple at Babri Masjid site, resulting in tensions


Rajiv Gandhi assassinated
While campaigning in Sriperumbudur on May 21, 1991, Rajiv Gandhi assassinated

Economic liberalisation
On July 24, 1991, then FM Manmohan Singh presented the Budget alongside his outline for economic reforms


Panchayati Raj in place
Modern Panchayati Raj system put in place under the 73rd constitutional amendment


Babri Masjid razed
Babri Masjid demolished at Ayodhya on Dec 6, 1992, leading to large-scale riots across multiple states


Bombay under siege
A series of 13 bombs exploded across Mumbai on March 12, 1993


Metro rolls in Delhi 
On May 3, 1995, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation came into being, paving way for first Metro corridor on Dec 25, 2002

An extraordinary call
Then WB CM Jyoti Basu made first mobile call in India to telecom minister Sukh Ram on July 31, 1995

Internet in India
Internet services launched in India by VSNL on Aug 15, 1995


Nuclear state
India became a nuclear state in May 1998 after the Pokhran-II nuclear tests, codenamed Operation Shakti

First call centre
India’s call centre industry started with entrepreneur Pramod Bhasin establishing the first one in 1998


Destination Lahore
In thaw in Indo-Pak relations, then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, on Feb 19, 1999, took a bus yatra to Lahore

Kargil War
The thaw fizzled after Pakistan infiltrated Kargil in Kashmir in May 1999, leading to the Kargil war

Kandahar hijack
On Dec 24, 1999, Indian Airlines Flight 814 hijacked and flown to Kandahar; 3 terrorists released


Parliament attack
Pakistani terrorists attacked Parliament on Dec 13, 2001, killing nine people


Godhra riots
Widespread riots after 50 Hindu kar sevaks charred to death at Godhra on Feb 27, 2002


India gets RTI
Right to Information (RTI) Bill passed by Parliament on June 15, 2005, and it came into effect on Oct 12, 2005


1st woman President
Pratibha Patil took oath as India’s 12th and the first woman president on July 25, 2007


Abhinav Bindra wins goldAbhinav Bindra became the first Indian to win an individual Olympic gold medal in Beijing on Aug 11, 2008

Chandrayan-I launched
On Oct 22, 2008, ISRO launched Chandrayaan-I, India’s first lunar probe, under the Chandrayaan programme

26/11 Mumbai terror attacks
Mumbai attacked by LeT militants on Nov 26, 2008; over 170 people dead


Right to education
On April 1, 2010, right to education made a fundamental right, children in age group of 6-14 years brought under its ambit


Nirbhaya rape 
‘Nirbhaya’ raped, fatally assaulted on Dec 16, 2012


Polio free
India became polio free on March 27, 2014


NITI Aayog formed
NITI Aayog formed on on Jan 1, 2015; replaces Planning Commission


Aadhaar Act passed
Aadhaar Act passed by Parliament on March 11, 2016

India demonetised
Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 banknotes demonetised on Nov 8, 2016

Uri attack
Surgical strikes over PoK after Uri attack on Sept 18, 2016


GST launched
Implementation of GST regime by Parliament on July 1, 2017

Satellites in space
On Feb 15, 2017, ISRO launched a record 104 satellites in space


Section 377 struck down
Sec 377 that criminalised homosexuality struck down by SC on Sept 6, 2018


Triple talaq banned
Practice of Triple Talaq made illegal by Parliament on July 30, 2019

Article 370 
On Aug 5, 2019, special status accorded to J&K under Article 370 revoked 

CAA enacted
Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 passed on Dec 11, 2019, stoking protests


Covid strikes
India got its first Covid-19 case on Jan 27, 2020

Doklam clash
India-China face-offs started on May 5, 2020


Farm laws fiasco
Protests over three farm bills passed in Sept 2020; repealed on Dec 1, 2021

Javelin gold
On Aug 7, 2021, Neeraj Chopra won gold in javelin at Tokyo Olympics 


1st tribal President
On July 25 this year, Droupadi Murmu became India’s first tribal and second woman president

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