Sheila Dikshit was a veteran Congress leader and one of the longest-serving chief ministers of Delhi. She was also one of the longest-serving female chief ministers of any Indian state serving for a period of 15 years from 1998 to 2013. She led Congress party to three consecutive electoral victories in Delhi.
Born on 31 March 1938 in Kapurthala, Punjab, Sheila got her education from Convent of Jesus and Mary School in New Delhi. She graduated with a Master of Arts degree in history from the Miranda House at the University of Delhi.
Her political career began in 1984 when she became a lawmaker for the first time from the Kannauj Lok Sabha seat in Uttar Pradesh. Sheila Dikshit was a close associate of former PM Rajiv Gandhi and a minister in his cabinet. Due to her roots in Delhi, she contested Delhi Legislative Assembly election in 1998. Dikshit represented the Gole Market assembly constituency in the 1998 and 2003 Assembly elections and New Delhi constituency from 2008. During her term as Chief Minister, she ushered in an era of all-round development that transformed Delhi into a world-class capital. One of the tallest leaders of Congress party she served as Delhi's chief minister for three consecutive terms between 1998 and 2013.
Sheila Dikshit government was credited with numerous people-friendly programs. During her tenure, Delhi saw the rapid development of Delhi Metro rail which now has become the lifeline of this world-class city. She is also credited for phasing out of the killer blue line buses and introduction of modern low floor AC and Non AC DTC bus services. The 2010 Commonwealth Games was successfully hosted in Delhi during her tenure. She oversaw the creation of a network of flyovers in a city to ease the burden of traffic.
Her party was wiped out in the 2013 Delhi Legislative Assembly election. She was succeeded by Aam Aadmi Party's Arvind Kejriwal. Sheila Dikshit, after her stint as Delhi chief minister, also served as Governor of Kerala for a brief period.
Illness and Death
Sheila Dikshit died of a cardiac arrest on 20th July 2019. She was 81. Dikshit is survived by a son Sandeep Dikshit and a daughter Latika Syed. People from all walks of life mourned the passing away of one of the warm and affable politician.
President of India: Sad to hear of the passing of Smt Sheila Dikshit, former Chief Minister of Delhi and a senior political figure. Her term in office was a period of momentous transformation for the capital for which she will be remembered. Condolences to her family and associates #PresidentKovind
Narendra Modi: Deeply saddened by the demise of Sheila Dikshit Ji. Blessed with a warm and affable personality, she made a noteworthy contribution to Delhi’s development. Condolences to her family and supporters. Om Shanti.
Arvind Kejriwal: Just now got to know about the extremely terrible news about the passing away of Mrs Sheila Dikshit ji. It is a huge loss for Delhi and her contribution will always be remembered. My heartfelt condolences to her family members. May her soul rest in peace
Rahul Gandhi: I’m devastated to hear about the passing away of Sheila Dikshit Ji, a beloved daughter of the Congress Party, with whom I shared a close personal bond.
My condolences to her family & the citizens of Delhi, whom she served selflessly as a 3 term CM, in this time of great grief.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra: Sheilaji will always be remembered for her years of exemplary governance and immense contribution to the development of Delhi. I will miss her wise counsel, her sweet smile and the warmth with which she would hug me whenever we met.
Sushma Swaraj: I am sorry to know about the sudden demise of Sheila Dixit ji. We were opponents in politics but friends in personal life. She was a fine human being. #SheilaDixit
Rajnath Singh: The passing away of former Chief Minister of Delhi, Smt. Sheila Dixit is deeply saddening. She was a tall Congress leader known for her congenial nature.
Sheilaji was widely respected cutting across party lines. My thoughts are with her bereaved family & supporters. Om Shanti!
Mehbooba Mufti: Shocked to hear about the sudden demise of Smt Sheila Dixit. She was one of the tallest leaders in Congress & transformed Delhi in her tenure as CM. My deepest condolences to her family & loved ones.
Manoj Tiwari: Deeply pained to hear the sad and sudden demise of Sheila Dixit Ji Ex CM Delhi.. May God bless her soul and give her eternal peace..
Delhi will miss you Ma’am, u were a mother figure in my life...#RIPSheilaDixit
Akshay Kumar: Extremely sad to know about the passing away of #SheilaDixit ji...she effectively changed the face of Delhi during her tenure. Heartfelt condolences to her family
Ashok Gehlot: Deeply shocked and anguished to know about the demise of Sheila Dixit Ji. it is a great loss for Congress Party. She was a mass leader and would be hugely missed. May her soul RIP and may God give strength to the bereaved family.
(FOLLOWER OF Shrimati SHEILA DIKSHIT)
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