Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was a key figure in the Indian Freedom Struggle and a senior member of the Indian National Congress. He later served as India's first home minister and deputy prime minister. Patel made significant efforts to end alcoholism, untouchability, caste prejudice, and to emancipate women. He was India's first deputy prime minister following the country's independence. Patel was chosen to serve as India's Home Minister on the country's first anniversary of independence. He is referred to be the Father of Modern India because of his ardent support for the union of princely states into one country, his optimistic view of women's emancipation, and his active role in helping to shape India into what it is today.