Goa's first woman chief minister Shashikala Kakodkar passed away on Friday at her Altinho residence in Panaji after prolonged illness. She was 81.
Kakodkar, the daughter of former Goa chief minister Dayanand Bandodkar, died around 1.10 pm, her son Samir Kakodkar said.
The Goa government has announced two days of mourning. Holiday has been declared for all government office on Friday.
Family sources said she was unwell for for six months and was bed-ridden since the last one month.
Following her father's death in 1973 while being still in office, she became chief minister and continued to be in power till being ousted by the split within Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party in 1979.
Kakodkar, who was active in social and cultural fields, also headed Bhartiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM), a front demanding mother tongue be made medium of instruction in elementary education.
She is survived by three sons. The final rites would be performed on Saturday evening.
Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar expressed condolences over the death of Kakodkar. "We have lost the woman whose contribution in the development of the state was immense," he said.
The chief minister said though Kakodkar was not active in politics, he always approached her for guidance.
"We are orphaned by the death of Kakodkar. She has been a crusader of regional languages," Subhash Velingkar, convener of BBSM, said.
He said during her tenure as the chief minister, she worked to protect regional languages notwithstanding threat to her government.
MGP President Deepak Dhavalikar said in her death Goa has lost an "Iron lady".