Rahul Gandhi’s transformation over the years

Rahul Gandhi’s transformation over the years

A once reluctant politician who’s now firmly in the driver’s seat of the party, Congress president Rahul Gandhi turns 48 on Tuesday.
On the occasion here’s a lookback at the Congress leader’s life with images from various points of his life.
Rahul was born on June 19, 1970, and is the firstborn of Rajiv Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi’s two children. He did his schooling from some of India’s most prestigious schools – St. Columbus School in Delhi, and Doon School in Dehradun.
The family portrait of Rajiv Gandhi, Indira (partially hidden), Sonia along with Rahul (centre) and Priyanka (right). (Express Archive Photo)
After completing his schooling, he joined St. Stephens College in Delhi in 1989. But after his first year at St. Stephens, he moved to Harvard University for further studies.
In photos: Rahul Gandhi’s transformation over the years Rajiv Gandhi is seen consoling his young son Rahul Gandhi at the funeral of Indira Gandhi in 1984. (Express Archive Photo)
A year after he went to Harvard, his father Rajiv was assassinated by a LTTE suicide bomber in Sriperambadur, Tamil Nadu.
According to a Telegraph report, Rahul studied under the name of Raul or Rahul Vinci for security reasons and received his M.Phil from Cambridge University’s Trinity College in 1995. His identity was known only to the university officials and security agencies.
Like his father, politics wasn’t Rahul’s first calling. Rahul worked in a management consulting firm for three years, after which he started his own consultancy in India.
Sonia Gandhi with her children Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi at Teen Murti Bhavan with the Urns containing the ashes of Rajiv Gandhi on May 26, 1991. (Express Archive Photo)
Rahul hesitantly entered politics in 2004, and contested the general elections that year from his father’s former constituency of Amethi in Uttar Pradesh. He retained the family stronghold.
The 2004 elections marked the return of Congress at the Centre. Rahul was elected the General-Secretary of Indian Youth Congress in 2007 and also took charge of the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI). Subsequently, he was appointed the Vice-President of the Congress in 2013.
Rahul Gandhi and sister Priyanka Gandhi with the then Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto after the assassination of their father Rajiv Gandhi. (Express Archive Photo)
Before the 2009 general elections, Rahul undertook a countrywide political tour, addressing rallies and also taking part in a ‘padayatra’ to connect with people better. The Congress had been doing poorly in Uttar Pradesh, holding just 10 of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in the state at that time. In the 2009 polls, the party won 22 seats in Uttar Pradesh, its best show in decades.
n 2014 the Congress suffered a crushing defeat in the general elections and won just 44 seats, a significant fall from the 206 seats it won in the 2009 general elections. However, Rahul won from Amethi constituency, defeating Aam Aadmi Party’s Kumar Vishwas and Bharatiya Janata Party’s Smriti Irani.
In photos: Rahul Gandhi’s transformation over the years This photograph of May 27, 1991, Rahul Gandhi along with mother Sonia Gandhi carrying the urn containing his father Rajiv Gandhi’s ashes at Teen Murti Bhavan for handing it over to one of the state representatives. Each state received one urn while the rest left for Allahabad via a special train for final immersion at the confluence of three holy rivers.