al Families Who Shaped World History

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Some families will stop at nothing to achieve their goals. In the background of history’s most devastating wars and economical crises stand the ambitions and thirst for power of influential families that called the shots. People, governments and even countries were pawns that they played to mold human civilization as we know it.

10. Nehru-Gandhi Dynasty

The Nehru-Gandhi clan is remembered as the family that shaped modern India. They share the same name as Mahatma Gandhi and both fought for India’s independence, but that’s as far as the relationship goes. He was a spiritual leader, while the Nehru-Gandhis are a political dynasty that’s dominated the Indian National Congress ever since India claimed its independence.

Jawaharlal Nehru, opposed British occupation in India and led numerous civil disobedience campaigns, which put him behind bars. After being released in 1945, he played an important role in the negotiations that would create the independent states of India and Pakistan. He was appointed Prime Minster of the Republic of India in 1947, a position he held until his death in 1964.

A chip off the old block, Nehru’s daughter Indira Gandhi spent a year in prison for opposing British occupation. She was Prime Minister between 1966 and 1977 and again from 1980 through 1984, ruling like a dictator. She was assassinated by a Sikh member of her personal bodyguards. Her son, Rajiv Ghandi, shared the same tragic fate, killed during the 1991 elections by a young Tamil girl who tied a bomb to her body in protest of India’s political actions in Sri Lanka. Nevertheless, the family’s political ambitions couldn’t be quenched. Rajiv’s son, Rahul Ghandi, followed in his father’s footsteps and entered politics in 2004, aged 34.

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