On His 84th Birthday, a Look at Manmohan Singh’s Life & Politics

26 September marks the 84th birthday of former prime minister of India, Dr Manmohan Singh.

Did you know Dr Manmohan Singh’s speeches are written in Urdu, since he can’t read Hindi? Or that his first TV speech took three hours to practice?

Well, neither did we, before we dug up some lesser known things about the economist-politician’s life.

Born in 1932 in Gah, Pakistan, Singh was raised by his grandmother. Singh got his masters from Punjab University and a doctorate from Oxford. During the 1991 economic crisis, Singh presented a historic budget that ushered the nation into the era of liberalisation.

Singh is not only the first Sikh prime minister, he was also the only PM after Nehru to serve consecutive five-year terms.

His elevation by Congress president Sonia Gandhi to serve as the PM came as a surprise as the ‘silent’ PM had criticised the party for the 1984 Sikh killings.

It was under Singh that the India-US civil nuclear deal was signed, that the Indian economy grew at an unprecedented 9 percent and that the RTI and NREGA schemes were implemented.

During his tenure as the prime minister, the government was accused of many scams including the 2G spectrum scam and the Coalgate, but Singh’s own integrity was never questioned.

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