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Remembering Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia, a beacon of women’s empowerment 

July 9, 2024

The Scindia Kanya Vidyalaya community deeply mourned the passing of Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia last month. A revered matriarch of the Gwalior royal dynasty and mother of Union Minister of Communications Jyotiraditya Scindia, Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia breathed her last on the morning of May 15, 2024, at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi following a prolonged battle with pneumonia.

As president of the Board of Governors of the top-ranked all-girls legacy boarding school, she was committed to facilitating well-rounded education for the SKV girls and, over the years, made significant contributions to upgrading the school’s infrastructure.

A symbol of women’s empowerment, Madhavi Raje Scindia’s role as president of the Board of Governors of Scindia Kanya Vidyalaya stands as a testament to her commitment to promoting education for girls. In a world where women in leadership roles are still rare, her impact extends far beyond her immediate sphere, leaving a lasting legacy as a beacon of empowerment for women in India and beyond.

Rajmata“On May 15, 2024, we bid a sorrowful farewell to Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia, a revered figure whose legacy of service and grace has left an indelible mark on our hearts. Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia was more than just a royal; she was a beacon of strength, compassion, and unwavering commitment to the people.

Her loss is deeply felt by the entire SKV community. For me, personally, it is an unspeakable loss as I had the privilege of serving under her for the last fourteen years. Over the years, I learned to traverse her path — in step with the vision that she had for the school. She allowed me the freedom to make my choices, yet it was her intuition that truly guided me. Under her leadership, SKV achieved unparalleled success, becoming the No.1 girls’ residential school in the country for several consecutive years. Her memory will forever reside in our hearts and her wisdom will echo as the guiding voice in our minds. Saluting her steadfast spirit,” says Nishi Misra, principal, Scindia Kanya Vidyalaya, Gwalior.

A Legacy Rooted in Royalty and Service

Born in 1948 into the royal family of Nepal, Madhavi Raje Scindia was imbued with a strong sense of duty and service from an early age. In 1966, she married Maharaja Madhavrao Scindia, son of Jiwajirao Scindia – the last ruling Maharaja of the princely state of Gwalior during the British Raj – thus becoming a part of Gwalior’s royal family. The young and ambitious Madhavrao Scindia joined politics at the age of 26 in 1971. A former member of the Indian National Congress, he was first elected to the 5th Lok Sabha in 1971 and thereafter was elected eight consecutive times.

Madhavi Raje Scindia not only fulfilled her duties as the spouse of a distinguished politician but was a dynamic personality in her own right. In the years following her husband’s untimely demise in a plane crash near Mainpuri (Uttar Pradesh) on September 30, 2001, Madhavi Raje Scindia was deeply involved in philanthropy and social work.

Apart from assuming the office of president of the Board of Governors of Scindia Kanya Vidyalaya, she chaired over 20 charitable trusts for numerous social initiatives, particularly in education and healthcare.

She also established the Maharaja Madhavrao Scindia II Gallery in the Royal Museum in commemoration of her late husband.

A Visionary Crafting Spaces for Opportunities

Late Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia was a perfectionist, known for her evolved aesthetic sense and exacting vision. A remarkable builder, she left an indelible mark on the school through numerous infrastructure projects.

She commissioned the building of two new boarding houses – Chitrangada Bhawan and Vijaya Bhawan. Perhaps the most significant of her contributions was the impressive new school building – Madhav Bhawan, which features state-of-the-art air-conditioned interiors and Indo-Saracenic style exterior similar to the iconic Kamala Bhawan which was built in 1880 AD as a VVIP lounge with an elaborate ballroom.

Some of the other infrastructure projects that saw fruition under her leadership were the staff apartment blocks, staff studio apartments, a new academic block, Smart Classes, a Robotics and Innovation Lab, air-conditioning of school buildings and boarding houses, and the setting up of sports facilities including a swimming pool, tennis courts, badminton courts, a volleyball court, cricket nets, and an athletics arena.

“As we remember Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia, let us also commit to continuing her legacy of service and compassion. Her life serves as an inspiration to all of us to work towards a better society, where the values of equality, education, and empowerment are upheld. Rajmata Madhavi Raje Scindia’s legacy of philanthropy and service continues to inspire us all,” says Nishi Misra, principal, Scindia Kanya Vidyalaya.
Also read:
Scindia Kanya Vidyalaya, Gwalior: Nurturing the next generation of women leaders

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