Former Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy Dies At 79: State Declares Holiday, Exams Postponed
Written by Sanjay Kumar
General Secretary of the All India Congress Committee
- Born: 31 October 1943, Kumarakom
- Died: 18 July 2023
- Party: Indian National Congress
- Spouse: Mariamma Ummen
- Office: Member of the Kerala Legislative Assembly since 1970
- Previous offices: Finance Minister of Kerala (2015–2016), MORE
- Children: Achu Oommen, Maria Oommen, Chandy Oommen
Congress veteran and former Kerala chief minister, Oommen Chandy, passed away on Tuesday (July 18) at the age of 79, as announced by his family and Kerala Congress president K Sudhakaran.
In light of the passing of the two-time chief minister of Kerala, the state government has made the decision to declare today (July 18) as a public holiday. This holiday serves as a mark of respect and tribute to the late chief minister. As a result, all government offices and educational institutions, including professional colleges, will remain closed on Tuesday. The people of Kerala will observe a period of mourning for two days.
The Mahatma Gandhi University has also cancelled all the exams scheduled for 18 July.
Expressing his sorrow, Sudhakaran tweeted, “The tale of the king who triumphed over the world with the power of ‘love’ finds its poignant end. Today, I am deeply saddened by the loss of a legend, Oommen_Chandy. He touched the lives of countless individuals, and his legacy will forever resonate within our souls. RIP!”
Chandy, who served as the chief minister of Kerala twice, breathed his last in Bengaluru in the early hours of Tuesday, according to the announcement made by his family. Chandy’s son, Chandy Oommen, shared the news on his Facebook page simply stating, “Appa has passed away.”
Having been unwell for a considerable period, Chandy had been receiving treatment at a healthcare facility in Bengaluru.
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan also conveyed deep sorrow over Chandy’s demise.
About Oommen Chandy
Oommen Chandy served as the Kerala chief minister twice, from 2004-2006 and 2011-2016.
Beginning his political career as a legislator, Chandy won the state assembly elections in 1970 at the age of 27. He went on to win in 11 consecutive polls since then.
Throughout the past five decades, Chandy solely represented his home constituency, Puthuppally. In 2022, he became the longest-serving member of the state assembly by representing Puthupally for 18,728 days, surpassing the record held by former Kerala Congress (M) leader late KM Mani.
Chandy served as a minister four times in various cabinets during his political journey and also held the position of Leader of Opposition in the state assembly on four occasions.