Morarji Ranchhodji Desai was an Indian independence activist and served between 1977 and 1979 as the 4th Prime Minister of India and led the government formed by the Janata Party.
During his long career in politics, he held many important posts in government such as Chief Minister of Bombay State, Home Minister, Finance Minister and 2nd Deputy Prime Minister of India. In retirement, he lived in Mumbai and died on April 10, 1995 at the age of 99.
Here are some lesser-known facts about the 4th Prime Minister of India:
Morarji was a moralist.
He was a vegetarian by birth and by conviction.
He got married at the age of 15 to Gujraben.
He is a longtime practitioner of 'urine therapy.' He attributed his longevity to drinking urine-which he called 'the water of life.'
He was the first non-Congress Prime Minister of India.
He was the only Prime Minister of India born in a leap year.
He joined Civil services in Gujarat after completing his studies. He resigned as Deputy Collector of Godhra in 1939 after he was blamed of behaving softly with the Hindus in riots of 1927-28. After that he joined Gandhi ji under Civil Disobedience movement.
He worked as a Home Minister in Jawahar Lal Nehru's incumbency and deputy PM and Finance Minister in Indira Gandhi's regime.
When Indira Gandhi took away Finance Portfolio from him and nationalized 14 large banks, he resigned and formed Indian National Congress which was also called Syndicate. The Indira Gandhi's group Indian National Congress was called as Indicate.
He went for indefinite hunger strike for supporting Nav Nirman movement of Gujarat.
When Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), India's external intelligence agency was formed in 1968, Desai regarded it as the praetorian guard of Indira Gandhi and promised to cease all activities of this agency when he became the Prime Minister, which he successfully did to some extent.