"He was known for his honesty and humility throughout his life. " says wikipedia about the second prime minister of India, and the only one who was undoubtedly clean, in the murky world of Indian politics.
Wiki further says, "Although Shastri had been a cabinet minister for many years in the 1950s, he was poor when he died. All he owned at the end was an old car, which he had bought in instalments from the government and for which he still owed money. He was a member of Servants of India society (which included Gandhiji, Lala Lajpat Rai, Gopal Krishna Gokhle) which asked all its members to shun accumulation of private property and remain in public life as servants of people."
An excerpt from the article, A PM who paid when sons used official car
At a time when Indian politicians make news for corruption and misuse of power comes a book on Lal Bahadur Shastri, the country's second prime minister who was so upright that he deposited money in government coffers because his sons had used his official car.
The incident has been captured in the book "Lal Bahadur Shastri: Past Forward" (Konark) by his son Sunil Shastri, a Congress politician and a former minister in Uttar Pradesh.
Sunil Shastri says he used to imagine having a big luxury car commensurate with the status of his 'babuji'(father) and Lal Bahadur Shastri did get a Chevrolet Impala for official use. "One day I told babuji's personal secretary to ask the driver to bring the Chevrolet to the residence. We asked the driver for the keys and went for a drive," he says in the book. Lal Bahadur Shastri later confronted the driver, saying, "Do you keep a logbook with you?" "When he nodded, babuji asked him to note the distance the car had run the previous day. When the driver said 14 km, he advised him to note it 'for private use' and then asked amma to give his personal secretary the amount applicable to be deposited in the government account."
An excerpt from another article, in the Sunday Guardian
Lal Bahadur Shastri proved to be the best Prime Minister India has had so far. As Minister for Railways and Transport, he set a great example of political and moral responsibility in India's political culture, by resigning in the wake of a railway accident at Ariyalur in Tamil Nadu in 1956 that resulted in 144 deaths. Nehru informed Parliament that he was accepting the resignation because it would set an example in constitutional propriety and not because Shastri was in any way culpable. Compare this with the attitudes of today. Shastri frankly stated that corruption was permeating fast in our political systems and reaching the uppermost echelons of the state. He set about combating it with sincerity and vigour, and in 1961 as Union Home Minister was instrumental in appointing the Committee on Prevention of Corruption under the chairmanship of K. Santhanam. The Central Vigilance Commission is one of the offshoots of the Santhanam Committee recommendations. The most glorious contribution of this diminutive and modest man lay in India's victory over Ayub Khan's infiltration warfare in Kashmir, over his army and tanks. Under Shastri's leadership, Pakistan was humiliated and a Kashmir settlement forced on it by the historical Tashkent Declaration
To sum up, the current disillusionment with the Indian political scenario, is perhaps the reason why there are so many articles and photos of Lal Bahadur Shastri being shared on facebook, though hardly any mention is made of him in the Indian newspapers on his birth anniversary.