Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit, née Sarup Kumari Nehru (1900-1990)

Schwartz’s flat, Eaton Square, London
27 March 1978

Pandit was the first woman to become a government minister and the first female president of the United Nations General Assembly. She was also India’s High Commissioner in the UK and ambassador to Ireland. Pandit was imprisoned three times by the British colonial government for nationalist activities.

‘Having read her books, I was impressed with all the time she and her family, including her brother, Mr Nehru [the first Prime Minister of India], had spent in jail and how calmly they had endured it’, reflected Schwartz.

Photo © National Portrait Gallery, London

Photo © National Portrait Gallery, London