Sushila Devi, the wife of Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal, died at a private hospital here following a brief illness, officials said on Monday. The first lady of the state, who was 75, breathed her last on Sunday night, they said.
"With profound grief and heavy heart, we inform that the First Lady of the State Smt Sushila Devi passed away yesterday night. Let us pray for the departed holy soul. Om Shanti!," the official Twitter handle of the Odisha Governor said. She is survived by husband, four daughters and three sons.
A constant companion in various activities of the governor, she was religious and had a passion for socio- cultural pursuits, Raj Bhavan sources said. A host of dignitaries, including Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, expressed deep grief at her demise.
Describing her as a very warm and pious person, Patnaik conveyed his deep sympathy to the governor and other members of the bereaved family. "May her soul rest in peace," he said in a message. Union Petroleum and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said he was praying to Lord Jagannath to give enough strength to the governor's family.
Among others, BJP national vice-president Baijayant Panda, state BJP President Samir Mohanty and Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president Niranjan Patnaik condoled the passing away of the first lady. Andhra Pradesh Governor Biswabhusan Harichandan also mourned the demise of Sushila Devi, describing her as a warm and kind person, who actively participated in several programmes for the welfare of the poor and needy.
The governor, his wife and four other family members had tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this month, the sources added.