Madame Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit (1900-1990)

  • Younger sister of Jawaharlal Nehru
  • “unofficial delegate” at 1945 San Francisco UN Charter Conference
  • “brilliant, silver-tongued orator” (A. M. Wendell Malliet, “Little Nations Deal Blow to Ambition of Gen. Smuts,” New York Amsterdam News, December 14, 1946, pg. 1
  • Ambassador to the United States, 1949 (previously, Ambassador to USSR)
  • President of the UN General Assembly, 1953

Online reference source:

Dictionary of National Biography, Pandit


Andrews, Robert Hardy. A Lamp for India: The Story of Madame Pandit (1967).

Grover, Verinder and Ranjana Arora, ed. Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit. Vol. 4, Great Women of Modern India. New Delhi: Deep & Deep Publications, 1993.

Guthrie, Anne. Madame Ambassador; The Life of Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1962.

Jensen, Irene Khin Khin. “The Men Behind the Women: A Case Study of the Political Career of Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit,” in Contributions to Asian Studies, Vol. 10, 1997, 76-93.

Primary Sources:

Papers: Nehru Memorial Library, New Delhi; British Film Institute, National Archive

The Scope of Happiness: A Personal Memoir. New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1979.

Nehru, Jawaharlal, Before Freedom (2000) [letters to Vijayalakshmi]

American History in Video:

1955, India used to look to America as a beacon of freedom

1953, Interview on Longines Chronoscope

1951, Truman signs grain bill for India