All you need to know about Sheila Dikshit

Sheila Dikshit has been chosen today by the Congress as the chief minister candidate for Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls. Here are some facts that will help you know her better.

1. Sheila Dikshit first big assignment came when Indira Gandhi began to notice her while she was handling her father-in-law's work. Gandhi nominated Sheila as a member of the Indian delegation to the UN Commission on the status of women.

2. Dikshit was married to Vinod Dikshit, son of independence activist and former West Bengal Governor Uma Shankar Dikshit, who came from Ugu village of Unnao.He was as an officer in the Indian Administrative Service. He died due to a heart attack in a train journey.

3. In Uttar Pradesh, she and her 82 colleagues were jailed in August 1990 for 23 days by the state government when she led a movement against the atrocities being committed on women.

4. She was elected as an MP from Kannauj in Uttar Pradesh in 1984 and became a minister in Rajiv Gandhi's government between 1986 and 1989.

5. In the year 1998, Sheila Dikshit was appointed president of the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC), being given charge of a party that was driven by factionalism with just six months to go for Assembly polls. Nudged along by an anti-incumbency wave against the BJP government owing to a serious onion crisis in Delhi, Sheila's Congress won 52 out of 70 seats that year.

6. It was only upon her marriage into the family of former Union Minister Uma Shankar Dikshit that she was exposed to politics. (She married Dikshit's son Vinod, an IAS officer.)

7. Good governance and infrastructure development have remained Sheila Dikshit's keywords throughout the three terms she has enjoyed since.

8. Sheila Dikshit is a powerful administrator and a popular leader who ruled Delhi as the Chief Minister for three consecutive terms.

9. She completed her schooling in the Convent of Jesus and Mary School, New Delhi. She is a Master of Arts in History from Miranda House, which falls under the University of Delhi. She is also a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Delhi. Her husband, Late Vinod Dikshit, was from the Unnao District, Delhi. He worked as an officer in the Indian Administrative Services (IAS). Vinod Dikshit was the son of Late Uma Shankar Dikshit, who was a renowned freedom fighter and who later became a union cabinet minister. He was also a former governor of the state West Bengal.

10. Sheila Dikshit has a son, Sandeep Dikshit, and a daughter Latika Syed. Sandeep Dikshit, a representative of the Indian National Congress, is a Member of Parliament (MP) of the 15th Lok Sabha of India.

News24Bureau