P.V. Narasimha Rao The Prime Minister of India from 1991 to 1996 with minority in Parliament.He is often referred to as the “Father of Indian Economic Reforms”.Future prime ministers Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Manmohan Singh continued the economic reform policies pioneered by Rao’s government. He employed Dr. Manmohan Singh as his Finance Minister to embark on historic economic transition.Rao was also referred to as Chanakya for his ability to steer economic and political legislation through the parliament at a time when he headed a minority government proceded by Chandershekhar.
His ascendancy to the prime ministership was politically significant in that he was the second holder of this office from a non-Hindi-speaking region and the first from Southern India.
This personality trait subverted his own place in the consciousness of the new India that he helped shape
P.V. Narasimha Rao, who would have turned 99 on Sunday, was, arguably, the first accidental Prime Minister of India. He was also an accidental Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. Very few, if any, foresaw Rao to be Prime Minister in 1991. No one had expected him to become the Chief Minister of his State about two decades before that. Once in office, on both occasions, Rao brought in reforms that fundamentally changed the destiny of Andhra Pradesh and India. Rao was essentially a mute rebel, intensely uncomfortable with the socio-economic ethos around him. The rebel in him was not in enough measure to make him an outsider, but was sufficient to mount an intellectual challenge from the inside. A combination of his discomfort with the status quo and his unwillingness to roll up his sleeves for an open fight turned him into a subversive insider.
Rao’s term as Prime Minister was an eventful one in India’s history. Besides marking a paradigm shift from the industrialising, mixed economic model of Jawaharlal Nehru to a market driven one, his years as Prime Minister also saw the emergence of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), a major right-wing party, as an alternative to the Indian National Congress which had been governing India for most of its post-independence history. Rao’s term also saw the destruction of the Babri Mosque in Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh when BJP’s Kalyan Singh was Chief Minister, which triggered one of the worst Hindu-Muslim riots in the country since its independence.