Former Odisha CM JB Patnaik No More

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Bhubaneswar, April 21: Former Odisha chief minister and Assam Governor Janaki Ballav Patnaik is no more. He passed away in Tirupati early this morning. He was 89. He is suvived by his wife Jayanti Patnaik, son Pruthvi Ballav Patnaik, two daughters Sudatta and Supriya.

He was admitted to a private hospital late night yesterday after he felt severe pain in heart. He breathed his last at about 3 am.

He had visited Tirupati to attend a convocation function of the Tirupati Rashtriya Sanskruti University as the chief guest scheduled today. Yesterday, Patnaik had also visited Tirupati shrine to have darshan, probably his last darshan to Balaji during his life time.

He met the VC of the university, had dinner and after which he felt pain in his chest. His body will be brought to Bhubaneswar this afternoon in the same flight he boarded to Tirupati yesterday.

The last rites will be performed and he will be cremated at Swarga Dwar in Puri tomorrow.

The Odisha government announced a state holiday today and a seven-day state mourning. After the news was aired, the leaders of all political parties in the state expressed their grief over his demise.

With the demise of the veteran Congress leader, this is an end of the era for the party that is struggling to revive in Odisha politics.

The three-time chief minister was born at Rameswar village in Khordha district on January 3, 1927. He was Civil Aviation minister during Indira Gandhi regime at Centre. Later, he was given the responsibility of CM in Odisha in 1980.

He was appointed the Governor of Assam by the UPA government in 2009. He is the lone Governor who completed his full term during the NDA government that came to power in May last year.

Besides his role in politics, he was the eminent writer and successful journalist. He won many awards for his contribution to Odia literature. He was conferred Odisha Sahitya Akademi award for his book "Bairagya Shataka" in 1996. He had won the Central Sahitya Akademi for his work “Bankim Chandra Upanyasmala", a translation of the novels by Bankim Chandra, in 2001.

As a journalist, he had achieved success in his career. He had edited one English and Odia daily. In one line, Patnaik was successful in politics, literature and journalism.

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