New Delhi: One of India’s first English news presenter Gitanjali Aiyar passed away on Wednesday, 7 June. Remembered for her poise, erudite delivery and enunciation, Delhi-based Aiyar died of brain haemorrhage. She was 72 and had been ailing for a while. Aiyar is survived by son Shekhar and daughter Pallavi, both of them based in the US.

“She had Parkinson’s disease and was on medication. She collapsed after returning home from a walk,” said a close friend of Gitanjali Aiyar. Meanwhile, people are taking to Twitter to pay condolences to Aiyar and remembering the news presenting days during her time.

About Gitanjali Aiyar

  1. Aiyar, began her career in the TV news industry, when she joined Doordarshan in 1976 after completing her graduation from Kolkata’s Loreto College in ‘71.2. B
  2. Besides news, Aiyar was also involved in theatre and also obtained a diploma from the National School of Drama.
  3. She also won the Indira Gandhi Priyadarshini Award for Outstanding Women in 1989.
  4. Aiyar grew up by observing people like Surojit Sen and Pamela Singh reading news on the radio, and was greatly influenced by them, a report in Indian Express said.
  5. After her graduation in 1971, Aiyar auditioned at AIR and joined the English news section.
  6. She presented popular shows related to taking English song requests A Date With You on Friday nights on All India Radio.
  7. She moved to DD in 1976. In 1982, when DD became national and colour TV came to India, newsreaders found recognition on the streets.
  8. Aiyar became vastly influential across the country in the mid 1970s, before which Doordarshan only offered programmes like Chitrahaar and Krishi Darshan.
  9. She has also been apopular face in several print advertisements and even acted in Sridhar Kshirsagar’s TV drama “Khandaan”.
  10. After her career in the news industry, Aiyar ventured into corporate communications, government liaison and marketing. She was the head of major donors at the World Wide Fund, India.

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