Watch: 70 Events That Have Defined 70 Years of Independent India

If you had to pick one iconic event for every year of independent India, what would your list of seventy be?

2 min read

It was an August seven decades ago when, at the stroke of the midnight hour, India awoke to life and freedom. A long and bitter struggle for sovereignty had ended a 190-year-old spell of colonial rule. In the seventy tumultuous years since, several events have defined the trajectory and shape of our nation today.

If you had to pick one iconic event for every year of independent India, what would your list of seventy be? Take a look at the one we came up with and tell us in the comments whether you agree.


1947: India achieves independence
1948: Mahatma Gandhi assassinated
1949: RBI nationalised
1950: Constitution of India implemented
1951: Delhi hosts 1st Asian Games ever
1952: First general election held
1953: Air India nationalised
1954: India, China sign Panchsheel Treaty for “peaceful coexistence”
1955: Hindu Marriage Act passed
1956: Dr BR Ambedkar converts to Buddhism
1957: Oscar nomination for ‘Mother India’
1958: AFSPA comes into effect
1959: Doordarshan launched
1960: Gujarat & Maharashtra formed
1961: Goa becomes part of India
1962: War against China
1963: India launches its first rocket
1964: Nehru no more
1965: War against Pakistan
1966: Indira becomes PM for the first time
1967: Naxalbari uprising
1968: Green Revolution’s ‘Miracle Rice’ developed
1969: 14 top banks nationalised
1970: Indira moves to abolish privy purses
1971: War against Pakistan, freedom for Bangladesh
1972: PIN codes introduced
1973: Chipko movement launched
1974: JP movement begins; Pokhran nuclear test successful
1975: Emergency imposed
1976: Mass sterilisation program at its peak
1977: Emergency lifted, Indira defeated
1978: Demonetisation
1979: Nobel Prize for Mother Teresa
1980: Bhagalpur blindings
1981: Tromaril, first drug synthesised by Indian scientists
1982: Asiad heralds entry of the colour TV
1983: India win cricket World Cup
1984: Anti-Sikh riots after Indira's death; Bhopal gas tragedy
1985: Punjab Accord signed
1986: Babri Masjid unlocked; law passed against Shah Bano judgment
1987: Indian troops In Lanka conflict
1988: Voting age reduced from 21 to 18
1989: Congress overthrown again, VP Singh becomes PM
1990: Mandal agitation; Kashmiri Pandit exodus
1991: Liberalisation of Indian economy
1992: Babri Masjid demolished
1993: Bombay blasts and riots
1994: Miss Universe Sushmita Sen and Miss World Aishwarya Rai
1995: Internet access made public
1996: Atal Bihari Vajpayee as first BJP PM
1997: Arundhati Roy wins Man Booker Prize
1998: Sachin’s Desert Storm at Sharjah
1999: Kargil War
2000: India’s billionth citizen born
2001: Attack on Parliament
2002: Communal riots in Gujarat
2003: India and Pakistan agree to resume direct air links
2004: Tsunami
2005: Flood In Mumbai
2006: A year of bomb blasts
2007: Violence in Nandigram
2008: Indo-US nuclear deal; 26/11 terror attack
2009: AR Rahman, Gulzar and Resul Pookutty win Oscars
2010: Corruption and the Commonwealth Games
2011: India win cricket World Cup at home
2012: Nirbhaya gangrape
2013: Mangalyaan launched into orbit
2014: Modi comes to power
2015: Sania and Saina become world number 1s
2016: Demonetisation
2017: GST comes into effect

Video Editor: Kunal Mehra

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