Uma Shankar Dikshit (12 January 1901 - 30 May 1991) was an Indian politician, cabinet minister and Governor of West Bengal[1] and Governor of Karnataka.[2] Born on 12 January 1901 at village Ugu of Unnao district, he got his education from Kanpur. Since his student life he joined the freedom movement and was the Secretary of the District Congress Committee Kanpur during the period when Sh. Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi was the President of the Committee.
He served the Country as the Home Minister, Health Minister and Governor of Karnataka & West Bengal. He also served as treasurer of All India Congress Committee, and Managing Director of Associated Journals at Lucknow. He founded a Girls Intermediate College at his village Ugu in the memory of his mother.[3]
He was awarded Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian award in India in 1989, by the Government of India.[4]

Early life and education

Born in Ugoo in Unnao district(Unnao) of Uttar Pradesh state, to Ram Sarup and Shiv Pyari, he later studied at the Christ Church College, Kanpur.[2]


Uma Shankar Dikshit started his political career when he joined the Indian freedom movement, during which he was imprisoned four times.

Post-Independence he remained close to Nehru and later sided Indira Gandhi during the 1969 split in Indian National Congress. He joined the Indira Gandhi cabinet in 1971, thereafter he remained Minister for Works and Housing, Govt. of India, 1971-72 later given additional charge of Health and Family Planning, Minister for Home Affairs, 1973–74 and Minister for Shipping and Transport, 1975. He also remained Treasurer, All India Congress Committee (AICC), 1970-75.[2][5]

He remained the Governor of Karnataka, 1976–77 and Governor of West Bengal 1984-1986.

He died at New Delhi on 30 May 1991 after a prolonged illness at the age of 90 years.


His son Vinod Dikshit was a member of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), who married Sheila Dikshit, later Chief Minister of Delhi, and his grandson, Sandeep Dikshit, was a member of parliament from East Delhi for Congress lost to renowned bhojpuri actor and music composer Manoj Tewari and granddaughter is Latika Syed.[6][7]