Shastri, Shri Lal Bahadur (shrē läl bähäˈdŏr shäsˈtrē) [key], 1904–66, Indian political leader. He joined Mohandas Gandhi's noncooperation movement in 1921 and studied at the nationalist Kashi Vidyapeth school, where he was given the title Shastri [learned in the scriptures]. Elected to the central legislature in 1952, he served as minister for railways (1952–56), minister of commerce and industry (1957–61), and minister of home affairs (1961–63) before succeeding Jawaharlal Nehru as prime minister in 1964. Following the India-Pakistan War of 1965, Shastri met in Tashkent with President Ayub Khan of Pakistan and signed a "no-war" declaration. He died the next day (Jan. 11, 1966).
See biography by J. N. Yadav (1971); study by R. C. Gupta (1966).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.