Mumbai : Charles Correa, the renowned architect and urban planner who played a defining role in developing architecture in independent India, passed away here last night after a brief illness. He was 84.

The last rites will be performed on Thursday, family sources told PTI.

Correa has designed some of the most outstanding structures, including the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial in Ahmedabad and Madhya Pradesh Assembly building.

In the 1970s, he was the chief architect of Navi Mumbai, the new city that came up across the harbour from Mumbai, and was later appointed the first chairman of the National Commission on Urbanisation.

Correa is also known for pioneering work on low-income and affordable housing, a vital component of the urban planning, especially since the 1970s.

He won several national and international awards and was honoured with the Padma Shri in 1972 and Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian honour, in 2006.

Born in Secunderabad on September 1, 1930, Correa studied at St Xavier’s College in Mumbai before going to the University of Michigan and the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Correa taught at several universities in India and abroad and received awards including the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, the Praemium Imperiale of Japan and the Royal Gold Medal of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), which billed him as “India’s greatest architect”.

He is the founder of the Urban Design Research Institute in Mumbai, dedicated to protecting the environment and improving urban communities.

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled Correa’s death and said his architectural marvels reflected his brilliance and wonderful aesthetic sense.

“My deepest condolences on the passing away of the noted architect, Mr Charles Correa. May his soul rest in peace,” the PM tweeted.

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