But her political life and personal destiny was irrevocably altered on the fateful night of 15 Aug, 1975, when her father and almost her entire family including her mother and three brothers were assassinated in a coup d'etat by a section of disgruntled officers of the Bangladesh Army, some of whom were freedom fighters during 1971.Sheikh hasina and sister , Sheikh Rehana were on a good will tour of West germany at that time,Hasina then sought refuge in United Kingdom and later in India. She was exiled to New Delhi, India until 17 May, 1981 when she was allowed to return to Bangladesh.
Whileliving in self exile in India, Sheikh Hasina was elected the president of Bangladesh Awami League in 1981. After she returned to the country, the President Ziaur Rahmanwas assassinated in another coup in May ,1981. The following year, Genneral H.M.ershad captured power through a bloodless coup and declared martial law. In 1983, Hasina formed the 15-Party alliance to launch a movement to oust Ershad from power. She was in and out of prison throughout the 1980s. Her Party, along with the Bangladesh National Party, led by Khaleda Zia, was instrumental in the movement against the military rule . In 1984, Hasina was put under house arrest in february and then again in Nov. In March, 1985, she was put again under house arrest for three months.
In 1990, Hasina's 8-party alliance was instrumental along with another BNP-led alliance finally removed Ershad from Power.