President Pranab Mukherjee's wife Suvra passes away

President Pranab Mukherjee's wife Suvra passes away

President Pranab Mukherjee's wife Suvra passes away

Suvra Mukherjee, the country’s septuagenarian First Lady, passed away at the Army Research and Referral Hospital here on Tuesday morning.

At 74, Suvra had been ailing for sometime and recently complained of respiratory problems.

The First Lady breathed her last in the hospital’s intensive care unit, where she was undergoing treatment since April 7, at 10:51 am. “It is informed with deep sorrow that First Lady Suvra Mukherjee passed away this morning. She left for her heavenly abode at 10:51 am,” President Pranab Mukherjee’s Press Secretary Venu Rajamony said in a statement.

The cremation ceremony will be held at the Lodhi Road Crematorium at 10 am on Wednesday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vice President M Hamid Ansari, former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi, Union ministers, officials and diplomats condoled the death.

“Pained to know about the passing away of Suvra Mukherjee. My condolences to Rashtrapatiji and his family in this hour of grief. She will be remembered as a lover of art, culture and music.

 Her warm nature endeared her to everyone she met,” PM Modi, who was in Bihar to address an election rally, said in a message. Modi visited Rashtrapati Bhavan to offer his condolence after returning from Bihar late in the evening.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee arrived here in the evening to attend the cremation ceremony, to be held on Wednesday.

Besides Mukherjee, Suvra is survived by two sons Abhijit Mukherjee, a Congress MP, Indrajit Mukherjee and daughter Sharmistha, a noted Kathak dancer and Congress spokesperson.

Born on September 17, 1940, in Jessore (now in Bangladesh), Suvra, a graduate, was a talented painter with many group and solo exhibitions to her credit. She considered her mother, who too was a painter, as the source of her creative inspirations. She married Mukherjee on July 13, 1957.

An ardent follower of Rabindranath Tagore, Suvra was also a vocalist of Rabindra Sangeet and had performed in the poet’s dance-dramas not only in India, but also in Europe, Asia and Africa.

She founded the Geetanjali Troupe with mission to propagate Tagore’s philosophy as expressed through his songs and dance dramas. She remained a guiding force behind all the productions of the Troupe.

Suvra also authored two books—‘Chokher Aloey’, which is a personal account of her close interaction with former prime minister Indira Gandhi and ‘Chena Achenai Chin’, a travelogue recounting her visit to China.


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