Sonia Gandhi was born as Edvige Antonia Albina Maino. She is an Italian Born Indian politician and is currently the President of the Indian National Congress party, which is one of the oldest and most powerful parties in Indian politics. Sonia Gandhi was born in Italy and is the widow of former Prime Minister of India Rajiv Gandhi. She belongs to the third generation of the Nehru-Gandhi family. After the assassination of her husband Rajiv Gandhi in 1991, she was invited to take over the government but despite constant prodding from the party members, Sonia Gandhi refused and publicly stayed away from politics. However she agreed to join politics in 1997 and in 1998 she was elected as the President of Congress party. Sonia Gandhi has served as the Chairperson of the then ruling United Progressive Alliance in 2004 in Loksabha. She was re elected as the President for the fourth time in September 2010 making her the longest serving president in the 125 year history of the Congress party. Sonia Gandhi is the first since Independence and fifth overall foreign born person to be a leader in the Congress party. Sonia's foreign origin has been a part of controversy in Indian politics and soon after she became the president of the Congress party in 1998, three Congress party senior leaders Sharad Pawar, P A Sangma and Tariq Anwar challenged her right to try to become the Prime Minister because of her foreign origin. Sonia Gandhi offered to resign but there was a huge support within the party for Sonia Gandhi which led to the expulsion of the three rebels who then formed their own party called the Nationalist Congress Party.Sonia Gandhi was born on 9 December 1946 in Contrada Miani, Lusiana and she belonged to a Roman Catholic family with her parents Stefano Miano and Paola Miano. She lived in the village which is approximately 30 kms from Vicenza, Veneto in Italy where the Mianos have lived for generations. She studied in a Catholic school in Orbassano and then in 1964 went to the city of Cambridge to study English in a school under Bell Education Trust. Sonia Gandhi met Rajiv Gandhi at Varsity Restaurant in 1965 where she used to work whereas Rajiv Gandhi was studying at the Trinity College, Cambridge University at that time. Sonia and Rajiv got married in 1968 in a Hindu ceremony and then they moved and lived into the house of her mother-in-law and the then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi. Sonia Gandhi has two children, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. Rajiv Gandhi worked as an airline pilot and Sonia took care of the family. Despite being a member of the Nehru family, the couple avoided all involvement in politics. Rajiv actually entered politics after the death of his brother Sanjay Gandhi in a plane crash in 1980. Sonia Gandhi became a primary member of the Congress party in 1997 and later became the President in 1998. In the Loksabha elections of 1999, she contested in two seats one from Bellary, Karnataka and another from Amethi, Uttar Pradesh. She won both the seats and then chose to be a representative of Amethi where she had defeated BJP leader Sushma Swaraj. She was elected as the Leader of Opposition in 1999 and also called a no-confidence motion against NDA government in 2003.In 2004 Sonia Gandhi launched a nationwide campaign against the NDA government and following the unexpected defeat of the NDA she was expected to be the next Prime Minister of the country. However due to opposition from the NDA as well as legal issues Sonia Gandhi chose Manmohan Singh as the Prime Minister of the country. In 2013, she became the first Congress President to serve for 15 years continuously. In 2014 she contested and held her seat in Rae Bareli. Forbes powerful list ranked Sonia Gandhi 21st overall and 3rd most powerful woman in 2007. New Statesman listed Sonia Gandhi at number 29 in their annual survey of World's 50 Most Influential Figures in the year 2010.