Today in History – 16 December

16 December 1515

Affonso de Albuquerque, who is regarded as the real founder of Portuguese power in India, died at the age of 73 years.

16 December 1497

Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama is 1st European to sail along Africa’s East Coast, names it Natal.

16 December 1689

English Parliament passes Bill of Rights establishing limits on crown powers and requirement for regular elections

16 December 1707

Last recorded eruption of Mount Fuji in Japan.

16 December 1770

Ludwig Van Beethoven, greatest musician, poet and innovator, was born.

16 December 1971

Bangladesh was formed. President Yahya Khan of Pakistan changed his position dramatically and announced he would accept a ceasefire with India. After his forces in East Pakistan surrendered unconditionally, Yahya Khan vowed to keep fighting in the West against his political enemy. His reversal today undermines his administration, and there are growing indications he will step down as head of the military government. Yahya has already been criticized for his brutal repression of the Bengali separatist movement, which has renamed East Pakistan as Bangladesh. It appears that the separatists may actually benefit from the fighting, because India has managed to defeat most of Yahya’s military forces in East Pakistan.

16 December 1992

The Parliament adopts a resolution condemning the demolition of the mosque at Ayodhya and center appoints a one-man judicial commission to inquire into the Ayodhya incidents.

16 December 1997

Mamata Banerjee, Congress(I) rebel, declares that she would seek recognition and separate symbol for her “Trinamul Congress” and contest elections on her own.

16 December 1998

The Government introduces in the Rajya Sabha the Patents (Amendments) Bill 1998 amid Left protests.

16 December 1999

India agrees to Financial System Stability Assessment (FSSA) by the IMF.

16 December 2000

Kalyan Banerjee becomes the first Indian to head the Rotary Foundation, one of the richest bodies of the Rotary International.

16 December 2012

Nirbhaya Kand: A gang rape of a woman on a bus in India that resulted in her death leads to national and international outrage.

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