Former Union minister and two-time Madhya Pradesh chief minister Sunderlal Patwa died of cardiac arrest at his official residence in Bhopal on Wednesday. He was 92.
Patwa was found unconscious on Wednesday morning and was rushed to a private hospital where he was declared ‘brought dead’.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, former chief minister Digvijaya Singh, former Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia and several other leaders condoled the demise of Patwa.
PM Narendra Modi tweeted:
Saddened on the passing away of Shri Sunder Lal Patwa. He was a hardworking & dedicated leader whose good work as MP CM will be remembered.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 28, 2016
Shri Sunder Lal Patwa strengthened the BJP & was always admired by Karyakartas. My thoughts are with his family. May his soul rest in peace.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 28, 2016
Patwa who had been chief minister of Madhya Pradesh twice - once from January 1980 to Feb 1980 and later from March 1990 to December 1992 - was known as a tough administrator.
It was during his second tenure as the chief minister when the state government was dissolved in the wake of demolition of the disputed shrine at Ayodhya by karsevaks in 1992. Later, Congress was voted to power in 1993.
He served as a minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee cabinet at the Centre from October 1999 to September 2001. He was an MLA from 1957 to 1967, from 1977 to 1997 and from 1998 to 1999. He had been leader of Opposition in the state assembly as well. He was elected to Lok Sabha twice and was known as the mentor of chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
Coming from Malwa region, he got associated with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) at the age of 18. He was an active member and leader of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh and was jailed under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act during the Emergency from June 1975 to January 1977. He took part in RSS movements and held several posts in the Bharatiya Jana Sangh and the Bharatiya Janata Party. He went on to head the state unit of the party in 1996.