The eyes and ears of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, RK Dhawan breathed his last on August 06 in New Delhi. The 81-year-old veteran was Indira Gandhi’s closest aid till her death. Working as a personal secretary of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, he witnessed all the ups and downs of the Congress party very closely. It was not an easy task to win Indira Gandhi’s trust.
The longtime bachelor and workaholic Dhawan managed to win the confidence of Mrs Gandhi and accomplished the unparallel power, impact and authority. Working as the door keeper of Indira Gandhi, he was capable of controlling information.
Rajinder Kumar Dhawan was with her since 1962 and is said to be an eyewitness of her assassination. He was a two times Rajya Sabha member and served as Union Minster. Being a close aide of the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Dhawan has witnessed a lot that still remains a secret to many at least to the public domain. From the period of emergency to the blue star operations to the assassination of Indira Gandhi and then the escalation of Gandhi generation.
A senior journalist Rama Lakshmi’s book “With Great Truth & Regard: A Story of the Typewriter in India” talks a great deal about the veteran’s influence in the party. He was a dominant member who had authority to control the access to Indira Gandhi. Though according to his words, he never acted on his own initiative.
After the assassination of Indira Gandhi, there were speculations that Dhawan had a role in the killing. He and his family were kept under scrutiny, and every visitor to their house was questioned. Whereas, in real Dhawan has suggested Indira Gandhi change her bodyguards and not to let the Sikh guards work for her after Operation Bluestar.
In an interview to The Caravan, he was quoted saying, “I wish one of the bullets had hit me so that I wouldn’t have had to face the wrath of a sitting Supreme Court judge. Obnoxious comments and remarks were made about me”. One of the most influential man in Indian politics was brought down to zero, with no power for anything.
Later in 2012, at the age of 74, he married his longtime friend Achla and was survived by her till August 06.