The first woman chief minister of the then Union territory of Goa, Daman and Diu, Shashikala Kakodkar passed away at her city residence, Friday afternoon, following a prolonged illness. She was 81.
The government has declared a two-day state mourning as a mark of respect to Kakodkar, while the government offices were closed Friday afternoon.
Kakodkar is survived by three sons and their families. The last rites will take place in Panaji on October 29.
A prominent leader of the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), Kakodkar was the daughter of Goa’s first chief minister Bhausaheb alias Dayanand Bandodkar.
She was sworn in as the chief minister of the Union territory following the sudden death of her father on August 12, 1973, and held charge of the administration till April 1979, following a split in the party.
Later, Kakodkar came back in the government, during the 1990s as the education minister. She was instrumental in implementing Marathi as the regional language in primary education and sidelining the use of English.
Presently she was the convenor of the Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch, which is campaigning in support of its demand to stop government grants to the English medium primary schools in Goa.