Lal Bahadur Shastri became India's second prime minister, and upon his death was succeeded by Nehru's daughter Indira Gandhi, who remained in power until 1977 when, for the first time, the Congress lost in parliamentary elections to the opposition Janata party.Indira's loss was largely due to the increasingly authoritarian tactics she had adopted before she was voted out of power.Alexander the Great invaded northern India in the fourth century B. The Islamic presence in southern India occurred around the eighth century A. These Muslim invasions resulted in the conversion of a section of the populace to Islam, establishing forever a significant Muslim society in India.
Britain then strengthened its hold over its Indian colony by installing a parliament, courts, and bureaucracy.
Several independent Hindu and Muslim kingdoms, however, continued to exist within the broader framework of British rule.
India, the most populous country in South Asia, is a peninsula.
Bounded by Nepal and the Himalaya mountains to the north, Pakistan to the northwest, the Indian Ocean to the south, the Arabian Sea to the west, and the Bay of Bengal to the east, India occupies about 1,560,000 square miles.
The British hoped that this political party would serve to quell growing resistance to British rule by co-opting some of India's most politically aware and educated individuals into working within the bounds of British rule.
Instead, the Indian National Congress became the vehicle through which Indians coordinated their struggle for freedom from British rule.In 1994 the Congress, with Narasimha Rao as the prime minister, is once again in office, and is instituting unprecedented and far-reaching economic reforms in the country.The Rao government has succeeded in some measure in dismantling the old Nehruvian, socialist-style restrictions on the economy and on private industry.Moreover, a rising tide of religious fundamentalism and intolerance in recent years are threatening India's otherwise promising future.For the first time in decades, a powerful political party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (Bharateeyah Juntah) or the Indian People's Party, has challenged the prevalent belief in and acceptance of India's secularism, maintaining instead that India is a Hindu state.Satyagraha involved nonviolent protest through passive noncooperation with the British at every level.