Najma Heptulla Age, Biography, Husband, Children, Family & More

Najma Heptulla

Real NameSayyida Najma bint Yusuf
Full NameNajma Akbarali Heptulla
Profession(s)Indian Politician, Government Official, Social Advocate, And A Writer
Physical Stats & More
Eye ColourBlack
Hair ColourBlack
Political PartyBharatiya Janata Party (2004-Present)
Logo of Bharatiya Janata Party
Indian National Congress (1980-2004)
Logo Of Indian National Congress
Political Journey1980: Elected to Rajya Sabha
1985-86: Served as the Deputy Chairperson of Rajya Sabha
1986: Became the general secretary of Congress
1988-2004: Served as the Deputy Chairperson of Rajya Sabha
1993: Headed women parliamentarians' group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the same year, also appointed as the founder President of the Parliamentarians' Forum for Human Development
2000: Elected as the President of Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) by the NDA
1999-2002: Nominated as the President of Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)
2004: Left Congress and joined BJP
2010: Appointed as one of the BJP’s 13 vice presidents when Nitin Gadkari was the President of BJP
2014: Became the Union Minister of Minority Affairs
2016: Became the Governor of Manipur
Personal Life
Date of Birth13 April 1940
Age (as of 2023) 83 Years
BirthplaceBhopal State, British India (Now, in Madhya Pradesh, India)
Zodiac sign/Sun signAries
SignatureNajma Heptulla's Signature
Nationality Indian
HometownBhopal, Madhya Pradesh
SchoolMotilal Vigyan Mahavidyalaya (MVM) Bhopal
College/UniversityVikram University, Ujjain
Educational Qualification(s)M.Sc. (Zoology)
Ph.D. (Cardiac Anatomy)
Caste/SectDawoodi Bohra Muslim
Address16, Teen Murti Lane, Delhi
HobbiesReading and Writing, Listening to Music, Playing Badminton and Squash
Controversies• Najma Heptulla was accused of having altered a photograph in 1958 to show herself along with Maulana Abul Kalam Azad in a publication of the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR). The controversial photograph was published in an ICCR publication labelled 'Journey of a legend', on the life of Maulana Azad, a noted scholar, an independence activist and the country's first education minister. The publication came out when Heptulla was the head of the council. The photograph came portraiting young Heptulla with Maulana. The caption stated "Najma Heptulla with Maulana Azad after her graduation". The truth was out as official investigations later revealed Heptulla had graduated in May 1958, whereas the Maulana had died on February 22, 1958. The publication was later restrained by the ICCR and released its revised version but without the controversial photograph.
• She had a strained relationship with Congress leader Sonia Gandhi and she accused Sonia Gandhi of humilating her personally. So she left the Congress and joined BJP in 2004.
Najma Heptulla With Sonia Gandhi
• She stoked a controversy by reportedly saying "There is nothing wrong in calling all Indians Hindu" to which she later clarified that she had called all Indians Hindi, the Arabic term for people living in India and what she said was "not in relation to the religion but in relation to identity as nationality", she said.
Boys, Affairs and More
Marital StatusMarried
Marriage DateDecember 7, 1966
Husband/SpouseAkbarali A. Heptulla (1966–2007)
ChildrenSon- None
Daughter(s)- Three
ParentsFather- Sayyid Yusuf bin Ali AlHashmi
Mother- Sayyida Fatima bint Mahmood
SiblingsBrother- Not known
Sister- Not known
Favourite Things
Favourite FoodHyderabadi Biryani
Favourite PoliticianAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Favourite Actror(s)Dilip Kumar, Shammi Kapoor
Favourite Film(s)Bollywood: Shaheed (1948), Mughal-E-Azam (1960)
Hollywood: Mackenna's Gold
Money Factor
Salary (approx.)₹1.10 lakh
Net Worth (approx.)₹30 Crore

Najma Heptulla

Some Lesser Known Facts About Najma Heptulla

  • Does Najma Heptulla smoke?: Yes
  • Does Najma Heptulla drink?: Yes
  • Her family is of Arab descent and they claim to be Sayyid.
  • She is also the grand-niece of Indian Independence activist Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.
  • Her husband, “Akbarali A. Heptulla” played an important role in the formulation of the newspaper ‘Patriot’. He died in 2007.
  • In 1980, she joined the Congress; as she was inspired by Indira GandhiYoung Najma Heptulla
  • she is a strong advocate of women’s empowerment. She played an effective role at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing. In addition, she directed the Indian delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in 1997, and she received a special invitation to the International Women’s Leadership Conference at Harvard University, Massachusetts the same year.

  • She has been a member of both Congress and BJP. After being a member of Congress for about three decades, she joined BJP in 2004. As per the reports, she left Congress because she shared a creaky relationship with Congress President Sonia Gandhi. It was also believed that she was associated with BJP leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee and hence joined BJP. Najma Heptulla With Atal Bihari Vajpayee
  • She contested the Vice-Presidential elections but lost to Hamid Ansari in 2007 by 233 votes.
  • She won a seat in Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan and represented it from 2004 to 2010.
  • She left the Rajya Sabha when her tenure ended in 2010, but she was again elected to the chamber from Madhya Pradesh in 2012.
  •  She was appointed to the Rajya Sabha five times between 1986 and 2012.
  • She gripped the post of Deputy Chairperson of Rajya Sabha for 16 years.
  • When she was elected as Union Minister Of Minority Affairs, she was the only Muslim minister serving in Narendra Modi‘s cabinet.

  • After taking the charge of Minister of Minority Affairs in the Modi government, she said “We want to work for economic, social development and inclusive development (of minorities). Unless they don’t become a part of development process, there will be lopsided development.”

  • She was elected as the Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia in 2017.
  • She has written comprehensively on a range of wide subjects like human social security, environment, reforms for women, sustainable development etc and has penned a book called “AIDS: Approaches to Prevention.
  • She has authored a number of publications, including India’s Progress in Science and Technology: Continuity and Change (1986), Indo-West Asian Relations: The Nehru Era (1991), and Reforms for Women: Future Options (1992).