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Isher Judge Ahluwalia, noted economist and Padma Bhushan awardee, passes away


Well-known economist and Padma Bhushan awardee Isher Judge Ahluwalia died on Saturday after battling brain cancer for nearly a year.

She was married to Montek Singh Ahluwalia, a former Deputy Chairperson of the Planning Commission. She would have turned 75 on October 1. The couple has two sons — Pavan and Aman.

Isher Ahluwalia was Chairperson of the think-tank Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER) for 15 years and had stepped down last month due to ill health.

She had wide experience in the fields of economic growth, productivity, industrial and trade policy reforms, and urban planning and development.

At ICRIER, Isher Ahluwalia led a major research and capacity building programme on the challenges of urbanisation in India. In 2009, she was awarded Padma Bhushan by the President for her services in the field of education and literature.

Punjab Chief Minister Amrinder Singh said Isher Ahluwalia was one of India’s most distinguished economists “We had the privilege of having her as Vice-Chairman of State Planning Board in my last term.”

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairperson and Managing Director of Biocon, twitted: “Isher Ahluwalia, my dear dear friend and a brilliant remarkable intellectual economist, passed away after a brave battle with cancer. My deepest condolences to Montek Singh Ahluwalia and his sons Pavan and Aman in the family.”

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