The first chairperson of the National Commission for Women (NCW) Jayanti Patnaik died on Wednesday, September 28. The senior Congress leader passed away at 90 and is survived by her son and two daughters.
Jayanti Patnaik was a four-time member of parliament and a renowned social worker. She was the wife of late Odisha chief minister JB Patnaik, who passed away in 2015. Patnaik suffered from old-age related ailment and was taken to a hospital in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, where she was declared dead by the doctors.
Her son Pritiv Ballav Patnaik said she was taken to the hospital after she did not respond in the evening, and was declared dead by the doctors. He added that they were yet to decide on her funeral.
The President of India Droupadi Murmu condoled the death of the Congress leader and social worker. Murmu tweeted, “Sad to learn about the demise of Smt Jayanti Patnaik, wife of former Odisha CM J.B. Patnaik.”
Murmu added that Patnaik was an ex-member of parliament and an “eminent social worker who endeared herself to the people of the state through her service and dedication”.
Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal condoled Patnaik’s passing. The Rah Bhavan said in a statement, “Odisha Governor expressed his grief over the demise of former MP, senior politician, and noted writer Jayanti Patnaik. Her contribution to the field of literature will be remembered.”
Who Was Jayanti Patnaik?
- Jayanti Patnaik was born on April 7, 1932, in Aska, Ganjam district of Odisha.
- Patnaik served as a member of parliament four times and was the first chairperson of the National Commission for Women.
- She received her Master of Arts in Social Work from Sailabala Women’s College in Cuttack. She pursued her post-graduation studies at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) in Mumbai.
- Patnaik married JB Patnaik in 1953 and was elected to the Lok Sabha twice, first from Cuttack in 1985 and then from Berhampur in 1998.
- She was elected to the Rajya Sabha two times and also held the post of president of the All India Mahila Congress from 1998 to 1990.
- The NCW was established on January 31, 1992, and Patnaik served as chairperson from February 3, 1992, to January 30, 1995.