New Delhi: The Congress has lost two among its most prominent leaders to COVID-19 in the span of a week with the demise of former Congress Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and eight-time parliamentarian Ahmed Patel. Both leaders were treasurers of the Congress and celebrated for their ability to retain their sanity amid wicked politics and keeping the grand old party well-coordinated with others.
A former Union Minister and traditional Congressman, Gogoi died at the age of 86 earlier this week.
He was Assam’s longest-serving CM and sitting member of Assam assembly associated with the field of politics for over 50 years in which he acquired various positions within the Congress party, central government as well as Assam’s state administration.
As a leader, he earned national stature after he was elected Joint Secretary of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) in 1976 and under the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. He also served as the President of the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) in 1986–90 and led the party to a record three consecutive electoral victories in Assam in 2001, 2006 and 2011.
Gogoi died on Monday evening after developing a protracted illness following his recovery from COVID-19. He also suffered a multi-organ failure and was on non-invasive ventilation (NIV) since he was admitted to the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) on November 2, was put under invasive ventilation.
Meanwhile, with the demise of Ahmed Patel today, the Congress party has become devoid of what the BJP lost with the death of Arun Jaitley.
Known as one of Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s closest aide and her ‘Man Friday’, Patel’s passing has left an indelible stain on the grand old party.
“In Shri Ahmed Patel, I’ve lost a colleague, whose entire life was dedicated to Congress. I’ve lost an irreplaceable comrade, a faithful colleague & a friend. Feel deeply for his bereaved family to whom I offer my sincere feelings of empathy & support,” the Congress chief condoled.
A three-time Lok Sabha member and five-time Rajya Sabha MP, Patel was considered as the party’s troubleshooter as he played the key leader in steering the party out of difficult situations.
Patel died due to multiple-organ failure after his two-month-long battle with COVID-19. He was 71. The news of his demise was shared by his son Faisal Patel in a tweet as he said that the Rajya Sabha MP from Gujarat died at 3.30 am today.
“With profound grief & sorrow, I regret to announce the sad & untimely demise of my father, Mr. Ahmed Patel at 25/11/2020, 03:30 AM. After testing positive for COVID-19 around a month back, his health worsened further due to multiple organ failures. May Allah grant him Jannatul firdaus, inshallah,” he tweeted.l, the Congress has lost two of its most understated, finest gentlemen