Today in History – 7 December

43 BC

Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman orator and politician was assassinated in Formiae

1782

Hyder Ali, the warrior of Mysore, passed away in a camp near Chittur.

1825

First Steam Engine Ship “Enterprise” reached Calcutta Port.

1856

First Hindu widow married officially.

1909

Inventor Leo Baekeland patents the first thermosetting plastic, Bakelite, sparking the birth of the plastics industry

1941

Imperial Japanese Navy with 353 planes attack US fleet at Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Hawaii, killing 2,403 people

1972

Apollo 17, the last Apollo moon mission, is launched. The crew takes the photograph known as The Blue Marble as they leave the Earth.

1979

First International Children’s Films Festival was held in Bombay.

1992

Religious riots swept across India in the wake of the destruction of the ancient Babri Masjid mosque by rampaging Hindu fanatics in the northern Indian town of Ayodhya yesterday. More than 800 people had been killed and hundreds injured as Muslim and Hindu mobs stabbed, shot and beat each other. The violence had thrown the government into chaos and had spilled into the neighboring states of Pakistan and Bangladesh. The army had been called out to restore order in Bombay, where street battles left 41 dead. The stock market had been closed down and Parliament forced to adjourn. Advani quit as the leader of opposition in the Lok Sabha.

1993

BJP leaders Advani, Joshi and Kalyan Singh arrested in connection with Ayodhya demolition case.

1995

Indian National Satellite (INSAT-2C), third indigenous satellite in the INSAT-2 series, launched. This has additional capabilities such as mobile satellite service, business communication and television outreach beyond Indian boundaries. This is still in service. It was launched by Ariane launch vehicle at French Guyana.

1998

A. B. Vajpayee questions Pakistan’s decision to hand over part of occupied Kashmir to China and says the area belongs to India.