New Delhi, May 21: India paid homage to the former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on Thursday, May 21 marking his 18th death anniversary. President Pratibha Patil, Vice President Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the departed's widow Sonia Gandhi were among the first to pay their tributes.
Sonia Gandhi Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi and several Congress leaders arrived at Veer Bhumi, the memorial of the charismatic leader and paid floral tributes.
The day is also being observed as Anti-Terrorism Day. Seminars and discussions are organised against terrorism and a pledge would be administered to people against terrorism and for maintaining peace.
Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated on May 21, 1991 at Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu during a poll campaign by Sri Lanka-based organization Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). This death anniversary of the dynamic leader comes two days after the LTTE leader V Prabhakaran was confirmed to be dead by the Sri Lankan government.
Rajiv Gandhi who studied at Cambrigde, England and worked as an pilot for the Indian Airlines did not think of coming into the political arena untill the death of his brother, Sanjay Gandhi, in 1980. He won his first Lok Sabha elections in 1981 and India saw foreign investment, and industrial growth.