While Indira was in Britain in 1937, she began to spend time with Feroze Gandhi, then a
London School of Economics student.
Once she decided to marry Feroz, she said in an interview.
She also did not say ’yes’ to the proposal easily. It took Feroze a number
of years before Indira finally agreed. He had first proposed to Indira when she was just
On March 26, 1942, Indira married Feroze Gandhi, who became a lawyer at the age of 25,
Indira’s wedding was a beautiful yet simple ceremony. Instead of a customary
bridal sari of heavy brocade, she wore a simple pink cotton sari made from yarn that her
father had spun himself. She wore no jewellery. She just wore strings of fragrant motia
blossoms or Phoolon ke gehne around her wrists.
In 1944, Indira and Feroze had their first son, Rajiv.
They moved to Lucknow to set up a new home in November 1946.
In December 1946, they had their second son, Sanjay.
After her children were born, Indira was met with a dilemma - whether she should
continue to be as involved in politics or be a dedicated homemaker and a mother. Many of
those who have known her intimately assert that, if left to her she would have enjoyed
nothing more than looking after her home, husband and children. But, she had little
choice in the matter.
When Indira needed to go out to attend to any family or political chores, she usually
planned her activities in a way that ensured she was home once the boys returned from
school. She frowned upon the practice of entrusting hired nannies for bringing up the
children, a common culture among.
But this arrangement did not last for long. Her father’s insistence for her help,
made her move to Delhi. she took the boys with her but made frequent trips with both of
them, to meet Feroze in Lucknow.
“I did not have less love. I think my husband gave very deeply to me and I to him.
I think giving is what makes for happiness.“- She told a journalist
Their marriage lasted for 18 years, until Feroze died of a heart attack in 1960.
Indira’s younger son Sanjay had initially been her chosen heir, but after his
death in a flying accident in June 1980, Gandhi persuaded her reluctant elder son Rajiv
to quit his job as a pilot and enter politics in February 1981. Over a decade later,
Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated.