Heeraben Modi: A Centurion Mother’s Story

Heeraba Modi or Heeraben Modi was the mother of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. She passed away at the age of 100 on Friday. Like her illustrious son Narendra Modi, she also had to struggle a lot in her life.

Heeraba was born on June 18, 1922, in Mehsana, Gujarat. At a young age, she got married to Damodardas Moolchand Modi, a tea seller in Vadnagar. The couple had five sons and one daughter. They were Amrit Modi, Pankaj Modi, Narendra Modi, Prahlad Modi, Soma Modi, Vasanti Ben, and Hansmukhlal Modi.

Till the last days of her life, she was too active. She used to cook her own food. Even at the age of 100 see reached the polling booth to vote in the Gujarat assembly elections.

In an interview in 2015 with Facebook (now Meta) CEO Mark Zuckerberg PM Narendra Modi said, “She does all her work even now. She isn’t literate but follows developments through the news. When we were young, she cleaned utensils at our neighbours’ homes and did labour-intensive work. You can imagine what a mother had to do to raise her children.”

When his mother turned 100 this year, PM Modi wrote in a blog, “Today, I feel extremely happy and fortunate to share that my mother Smt. Heeraba is entering her hundredth year. This is going to be her birth centenary year. If my father had been alive, he too would have celebrated his 100th birthday last week. 2022 is a special year as my mother’s centenary year is starting, and my father would have completed his.”

PM Modi had described his mother’s difficult childhood in a blog. Heeraba Modi had lost her mother to the Spanish Flu pandemic. Family poverty made her life too hard. As a motherless child she could not attend any school to learn reading and writing.

She always supported all measures taken up by PM Modi. In 2016, during demonetization, she stood in a queue in front of an ATM to take out money to meet her needs. In 2021, she got herself immunized by COVID vaccine to motivate elderly persons in the country to get vaccinated without fear.



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