FIVE FACTS | December 15, 2017
It was a sad day for Sikkim when it lost its veteran political leader, Nar Bahadur Bhandari, who passed away on Sunday. He was one of the longest-serving chief ministers of Sikkim. Mr Bhandari, a three-term former chief minister, was 77. He is survived by wife Dil Kumari Bhandari, a former MP, two daughters and a son.
These five points will help you know more about the obscure school teacher turned politician.
>> Bhandari was born in 1940 at Malbasey in West Sikkim. He completed his BA degree from Darjeeling Government College and worked as a school teacher for some years before joining politics.
>> Known as a pragmati and resilient leader, Bhandari gained the love and respect of his students and fellow faculty. He taught in a government school before he joined active politics.
>> He became the chief minister of the tiny Himalyan state for the first time in 1979 on a Janata Parishad ticket and then again in 1984 and 1989 on a Sikkim Sangram Parishad ticket. The founder of the SSP, Mr Bhandari remained its president till his death.
>> Mr Bhandari was the second chief minister after L D Kazi to hold the reins of the fledgling state which officially became a part of the Indian Union in 1975. He also briefly served as an Independent Member of Parliament from Sikkim in the 8th Lok Sabha in 1984.
>> He was also a former president of Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee after he had merged his party Sikkim Sangram Parishad with the Indian National Congress in 2003. In May 2013, he was reinstated as the president of the Sikkim Sangram Parishad.