Freedom fighter and senior Congress leader Shivajirao Giridhar Patil passes away

Shivajirao Giridhar Patil, worked as a minister in the cabinet led by late chief ministers Vasantrao Naik, Shankarrao Chavan and Vasantdada Patil. He was also was awarded the Padma Bhushan, in 2013.

Shivajirao Giridhar Patil, senior Congress leader and former minister committed to the cooperative movement, passed away in Mumbai on Saturday. He was 92. The father of veteran actress late Smita Patil, had always displayed a staunch commitment to social causes across sectors with unwavering resolve and contribution in the fields of education and agriculture through the cooperative sector.

In 2013, Patil was awarded the Padma Bhushan.

A former member of parliament and state assembly, Patil had participated in the freedom movement as a student. He was a member of the Rajya Sabha during 1992-98, an MLC from 1960 to 67 and an MLA for three consecutive terms from 1967 to 1980.

Patil worked as a minister in the cabinet led by late chief ministers Vasantrao Naik, Shankarrao Chavan and Vasantdada Patil.

Patil was a politician who had friends across party lines. Known for his easy approach, he never allowed power politics to overpower his commitment and passion for social work.

Senior political commentator Bharatkumar Raut said, “Shivajirao Giridhar Patil was a staunch socialist. One can say that veteran socialist leader S M Joshi was his mentor.” According to Raut, “The late Congress leader and first chief minister and union defense minister Yashantrao Chavan got Patil to join the Congress. It was part of the expansion drive. It was then known as “berij che raajkaran” (politics of multiplication).

Leaders across party lines and prominent people from various walks of life offered condolences led by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.

In his message, Fadnavis said, “We have lost a great leader and reformer of the Cooperative Movement. His immense contribution in strengthening the cooperative network in sugar and education sector will always be remembered.”

NCP President Sharad Pawar, who has closely worked with Patil, said, “Patil showed absolute commitment to the Cooperative Movement and democratic ideology. He belonged to a generation whose politics veered on social commitments.”

Union Minister for Railways Suresh Prabhu also tweeted to offer his condolences along with several cabinet ministers representing Maharashtra.

The former Speaker in state legislature Dilip Walse Patil said, “Maharashtra and our country has suffered a great loss with the demise of Shivajirao Patil. My deepest condolences to his family.”


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