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Manohar Parrikar death: 18 Indian chief ministers who died while in office

Before Manohar Parrikar, J Jalalalithaa was the last CM to die in office.

SNS | New Delhi |

Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who had been suffering from pancreatic cancer, breathed his last at his private residence in Panaji on Sunday evening. He is the 18th Indian CM, and second one from Goa, to die while in office. Tamil Nadu CM J Jalalalithaa was the last CM to die in office. Listed below are all the 18 Indian chief ministers who died in office.

1. Gopinath Bordoloi (Assam): 1890-1950

Gopinath Bordoloi became the first chief minister of Assam after India attained Independence in 1947. He, however, could not rule an Independent Assam for long as he passed away in 1950, but not before securing sovereignty of the state against China and Pakistan.

2. Ravishankar Shukla (Madhya Pradesh): 1877-1956

Ravishankar Shukla became the first chief minister of undivided Madhya Pradesh in 1956 but died within two months. The freedom fighter was a social crusader who fought illiteracy and dowry system.

3. Sri Krishna Singh (Bihar): 1887-1961

When the Congress won the provincial elections in British India in 1937, Sri Krishna Singh had been made the first chief minister of Bihar. He held on to the post until his death in 1961, barring the World War II period (Congress ministries had resigned in 1939 protesting against the British action of declaring India to be at war against Germany without consulting the Indians).

4. Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy (West Bengal): 1882-1962

Bidhan Chandra Roy, a qualified medial doctor dedicated to his profession, was the second chief minister of West Bengal. He had accepted the position on Mahatma Gandhi’s insistence, and continued on the post until his death in 1962.

5. Marotrao Kannamwar (Mahrashtra): 1900-1962

Marotrao Kannamwar was the second chief minister of Maharashtra that was carved out as a separate state in 1960. He succeeded YB Chavan in 1962 but died after a short stint of one year.

6. Balwantrai Mehta (Gujarat): 1900-1965

Balwantrai Mehta succeeded Jivraj Narayan Mehta as the chief minister on February 25, 1963. He holds the distinction of being the only chief minister of India to become a war casualty. In 1965, during the India-Pakistani war, he was returning from a border area when the Pakistan Air Force shot down his civilian aircraft on September 19. All those on board the aircraft died.

7. CN Annadurai (Madras/Tamil Nadu): 1909-1969

CN Annadurai remains the most significant name in Tamil Nadu politics till date. Popularly known as ‘Anna’, he became the fifth CM of Madras state in 1967. He was the last CM of Madras state as its name was changed to Tamil Nadu in 1969. As he continued in office, Anna became the first chief minister of Tamil Nadu, but could hold the post only for 20 days. Annadurai, who had been suffering from cancer and had undergone a surgery in the US in 1968, died after his health deteriorated in February 1969.

8. Dayanand Bandodkar (Goa): 1911 -1973

Dayanand Bandodkar, was Goa’s first chief minister after liberation from Portuguese rule. Bhausaheb Bandodkar, as he was popularly known, won the elections in 1963, 1967 and also in 1972 as the head of the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), with thumping majority. He remained on the post until his death in 1973.

9. Barkatullah Khan (Rajasthan): 1920-1973

Barkatullah Khan suffered a heart attack while in office and died. He was only 53 years. The only Muslim chief minister of Rajasthan till date had served from July 1971 to October 1973.

10. Sheikh Abdullah (Jammu and Kashmir): 1905-1982

Sheikh Abdullah held the post of J&K chief minister three times after its accession to India. Known as “Sher-e-Kashmir”, Abdullah founded the National Conference and his tenure is known for his frequent imprisonments and a turbulent relationship with the government at the Centre. He died in 1982 while in office.

11. MG Ramachandran (Tamil Nadu): 1917-1987 

MG Ramachandran, the most popular Tamil film star ruled the political scene of Tamil Nadu after entering politics. MGR was the first film actor to become a CM, who went on to rule for 10 years — from 1977 to until his death in 1987.  In 1980, his government had been dismissed by the Centre for six month.

12. Chimanbhai Patel (Gujarat): 1929-1994

Chimanbhai Patel became the chief minister for the first time in July 1973, replacing Ghanshyam Oza. However, he could serve only till February 9, 1974, when he was forced out of office on charges of corruption. He returned to the post in March 1990 as a part of the VP Singh-led National Front. He later defected to the Congress and remained in power until his death on February 17, 1994.

13. Beant Singh (Punjab): 1959-1995

Beant Singh became the chief minister of Punjab in 1992. The state was infested with militancy then and Singh was credited with ending the reign of extremist violence. He was assassinated in a suicide attack in Chandigarh on August 31, 1995.

14. YS Rajasekhara Reddy (Andhra Pradesh): 1949-2009

YS Rajasekhara Reddy became the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh twice — first in 2004 and then in 2009. Popularly known as YSR, Reddy died when his his helicopter crashed in Chitoor district on September 3, 2009.

15. Dorjee Khandu (Arunachal Pradesh) 1955-2011

Dorjee Khandu became the chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh in 2007. He was again sworn as Chief Minister in October 2009 but died on April 30, 2011 when the helicopter in which he was returning to Itanagar from a trip to Tawang crashed.

16. Mufti Mohammad Sayeed (Jammu and Kashmir): 1936-2016

Mufti Mohammad Sayeed was the second CM of Jammu & Kashmir to die in office. Sayeed was a two-time chief minister of the state and had led the first coalition government involving the BJP. India’s first Muslim Home minister (in the VP Singh government), Sayeed became CM for the first time in 2002 leading a coalition government with the Congress. He died on January 7, 2016.

17. J Jayalalithaa (Tamil Nadu): 1948

J Jayalalithaa was serving as the chief minister of Tamil Nadu in her fifth stint when she died on December 5, 2016. She had held the post for over 14 years since 1991. Affectionately called Amma by fans and party activists, the former film actor was admitted to Apollo Hospitals in Chennai on September 22, 2016. She never recovered.

18. Manohar Parrikar (Goa): 1955-2019

Manohar Parrikar was the first BJP leader to become the chief minister of Goa. He headed the state four times between 2000 and 2019, but could not serve a full tenure in any term. He was the defence minister in the Narendra Modi government from 2014 to 2017 when he had to return to Goa to lead a coalition government.