Mercy Ravi, former Congress MLA and wife of Union Minister of State for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi, died at a private hospital in Chennai on Saturday early morning. She was 63.
Ms. Ravi had been undergoing treatment for kidney-related ailment for long. She was shifted from a private hospital in Kochi to Chennai on August 27 after her condition turned worse.
Mr. Ravi was besides his wife at the time of her death. Ms. Ravi is survived by three children namely Ravi Krishna, Lisa Rohan, and Lakshmi Ravi.
The body will be flown to Kochi from Chennai in a special aircraft. It will be kept at Ms. Ravi’s residence in Jawahar Nagar here for the public to pay homage. The funeral will be held around 6 p.m. at Mr. Ravi's ancestral home at Vayalar in Alapuzha district.
Daughter of Kuruvila Kattikaran and Thandamma, Ms. Ravi was born in Ernakulam on March 18, 1946. She completed her school education from St. Mary’s Convent in Ernakulam before pursuing her pre-university and degree programmes at Ernakulam Maharajas College.
She married Mr. Ravi on June 9, 1969.
She made her political foray through Kerala Students Union. Later, Ms. Ravi became the general secretary of Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC). In 1996, she tested her political luck by contesting as the Congress candidate for the Assembly elections from Mala in Thrissur district. But V. K. Rajan of the Communist Party of India defeated her.
Ms. Ravi kept her political struggle on and entered the State Legislative Assembly in 2001 by defeating Vaikom Viswam of the Communist Party of India (Marxist). She was the first woman MLA representing Kottayam constituency in the State Assembly.
Ms. Ravi had worked as general secretary of the Kerala Mahila Congress and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee. She had also served as the national president of the women’s wing of INTUC. Ms. Ravi was the Asia Pacific Regional Director of International Free Trade Union.
She had represented the country in the world women’s conference held in Beijing in 1995.
Ms. Ravi had penned a Malayalam book ‘Parali Pomena’. Published by DC Books, the book included essays and memoirs written by her.
Chief Minister V. S. Achuthanandan, Opposition Leader Oommen Chandy, and leaders of various political parties paid homage to Ms. Ravi.