Who is Basdeo Panday ?

Born May 25th 1933 , Saint Julien Village on the out skirts of Princes Town , to Harry "Chote" Sookchand and Kissoondaye Panday . He came to be the eldest of three boys, the others being Rabindranath Panday and Subhas Panday .

He attended New Grant Government and St. Julien Cklkl.M. School. , and was later enroll to Presentation College thanks to his Gran Uncle Joseph Hardath Dube .

As an adult , he worked as a sugar cane weigher for a year at Caroni Ltd., a primary school teacher at Seereram Memorial Vedic, Chaguanas, St Clement Vedic, Barrackpore and as a civil servant at the San Fernando Magistracy, where he took notes for Magistrates Churchill Johnson and former President of Trinidad and Tobago, Noor Hassanali .

In 1957 he was accepted into Lincoln's Inn, London (Law), the University of London (Economics) and London School of Dramatic Art (Drama).

Whilst in England, Panday worked as a labourer on a building site, a clerk at the London County Council and an electrician in order to sustain himself through University.

He was also an actor and played small parts in several films, most notably " Man in The Middle", with Robert Mitchum. He also performed on the London stage in several plays, one being "The Bird Of Time" in 1961.

In 1965, Panday was awarded a Commonwealth scholarship to pursue a Post-graduate degree in Economics and Political Science at the Delhi School of Economics and Political Science in India. He postponed the scholarship and returned home to practise law in Trinidad because of family commitments and the changing political situation in Trinidad.

Upon his return, having joined Workers and Farmers Party, organised by former Democratic Labour Party leader Stephen Maharaj, C.L.R. James, George Weekes (of the Oilfields Workers Trade Union), Basdeo Panday ran and lost in the 1966 General Elections .

In May 1973, he became the President General of All Trinidad Sugar and General Workers' Trade Union. In 1975, he spent two weeks at the Golden Grove Prison for leading a march with Trade Unionists which was deemed illegal .

By 1976 Basdeo Panday had formed an alliance with other union members, George Weekes and Raffique Shah. The three formed the United Labour Front, ULF . Facing the polls in 1976 and 1981 , Basdeo Panday was Leader of the Opposition for most of those ten years .

For 1981 General Elections, he co-founder the National Alliance (with A.N.R. Robinson Political leader of theBy Democratic Action Congress, Lloyd Best of the Tapia House Group,) to fight the 1981 elections.

By 1985 he co-founded the National Alliance for Reconstruction with A.N.R. Robinson and Karl Hudson-Phillips Political Leader of the Organisation for National Reconstruction .

Following a convincing electoral victory in 1986 he was made Minister of External Affairs and International Trade.

Panday acted as Prime Minister in 1987 while Robinson was out of the country.

In 1988, Panday, along with Kelvin Ramnath, John Humphrey and Trevor Sudama were expelled from the party after a disagreement with A.N.R. Robinson. It was claimed by them at the time by them all that A.N.R. Robinson was high-handed and authoritarian concerning with dealing with them and decision .

He then founded the Club for Love, Unity and Brotherhood (CLUB 88) which became the United National Congress.

In 1991 their candidates won more seats in that year's election than the then NAR.

On such a basis, the members of what was to become the UNC, argued this in parliament to become the opposition members, but the party only won 13 of 36 seats nationally.

It improved this margin to 17 in the 1995 General Elections elections. It could not form the majority in parliament to form the Cabinet , so , with the support of the two seats held by A.N.R. Robinson and the NAR, Panday was appointed the country's first Indo-Trinidadian and the first Hindu Prime Minister. A.N.R. Robinson became the first Tobagonian to become president .
Former Trinidad & Tobago Prime Minister Basdeo Panday
speaking at the 2004 G.O.P.I.O. Convention.
CBC : http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/trinidad-tobago/basdeo-panday.html
Wikipedia  : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basdeo_Panday/ 
i95.5 fm : http://www.i955fm.com/ttportal/tt-directory/item/120/1384.html