Sookdeo Bissoondoyal was a Mauritian politician and one of the leading figures in the independence movement.



Born in Tyack in 1908, Bissoondoyal passed his Teacher's Examination and worked as Primary School Teacher from 1923 to 1945. In 1946, he became active in politics and was elected to the Legislative Council in the Grand Port-Savanne constituency in the August 1948 elections. He was re-elected in 1953.

On 13 April 1958 he founded a political party, the Independent Forward Bloc (IFB). He was re-elected in the Rose-Belle constituency in the 1959 elections, which saw the IFB win six seats. Following the elections, Bissoondoyal was appointed Minister of Local Government and Cooperative Movements. He was re-elected in the Rose-Belle constituency in the 1963 elections, whilst the IFB increased its representation to seven seats.

In 1965, Bissoondoyal attended the Constitutional Conference in London leading towards the independence of Mauritius in 1968. The 1967 elections saw the IFB run as part of the Independence Party, an alliance with the Labour Party and the Muslim Committee of Action. The alliance won the elections, with Bissoondoyal re-elected in the Vieux Grand Port & Rose-Belle constituency, and subsequently becoming Minister of Cooperatives. He resigned from the Council of Ministers on 21 March 1969 due to a disagreement on some issues with the Prime Minister Seewoosagur Ramgoolam and became the Leader of the Opposition. In 1976, he stood for the general elections in the Vieux Grand Port and Rose-Belle constituency, but lost his seat. He died on 18 August 1977 at the age of 68.

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Noida, India
23.02.2016 (23.02.2016)
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Sookdeo Bissoondoyal