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Sampooran Singh Kalra & Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit

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Sampooran Singh Kalra & Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit

Sampooran Singh Kalra

Born: 18 August 1934

  • He known popularly by his pen name Gulzar, is an Indian film director, lyricist, and poet.
  • Born in Jhelum District in British India (now in Pakistan) his family moved to India after partition.
  • He started his career with music director S.D. Burman as a lyricist in the 1963 film Bandini and worked with many music directors including R. D. Burman, Salil Chowdhury, Vishal Bhardwaj, and A. R. Rahman.
  • He was awarded Padma Bhushan in 2004, the third-highest civilian award in India, the Sahitya Akademi Award and the Dadasaheb Phalke Award — the highest award in Indian cinema.
  • He has won several Indian National Film Awards, 21 Filmfare Awards, one Academy Award, and one Grammy Award.
  • He also wrote the theme song for Motu Patlu, an Indian animated sitcom.
  • He also wrote poetry, dialogues, and scripts.
  • He directed films such as Aandhi and Mausam during the 1970s and the TV series Mirza Ghalib in the 1980s. He also directed Kirdaar in 1993.

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Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit

Born: 18 August 1900

Died: 1 December 1990

  • She was an Indian diplomat and politician who was elected as the first female president of the United Nations General Assembly.
  • Hailing from a prominent political family, her brother Jawaharlal Nehru was the first Prime Minister of independent India, her niece Indira Gandhi the first female Prime Minister of India and her grand-nephew Rajiv Gandhi was the sixth Prime Minister of India.
  • She was sent to London as India’s most important diplomat after serving as Nehru’s envoy to the Soviet Union, the USA, and the United Nations.
  • Her time in London offers insights into the wider context of changes in Indo–British relations.
  • Her High-Commissionership was a microcosm of inter-governmental relations.
  • She was a member of Aligarh Muslim University Executive Council.
  • She never received any formal education.
  • She was an Honorary Fellow of Somerville College, Oxford, where her niece studied Modern History.
  • A portrait of her by Edward Halliday hangs in the Somerville College Library.

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