|Biographical detail : ||Bangladesh’s first woman prime minister.
Until the assassination of her husband, the military dictator President Ziaur Rahman, in an abortive coup in 1981, Begum Khaleda Zia had taken little interest in either politics or public life. In 1983, when limited political activity was allowed under the rule of General Hussain Ershad, Begum Zia was appointed vice-chairman of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party.
In 1991, Begum Zia was elected the first woman prime minister of her country in a democratic election. Then began a period of revolving doors in which the two women have dominated Bangladesh politics. In 1996, it was the turn of Sheikh Hasina, the daughter of the founder of Bangladesh, to win back power.
Five years later, in 2001, Begum Khaleda Zia succeeded her rival after another general election. There is no love lost between the two women.