Ahmed Patel’s demise irreparable loss to party: Ex-PM Manmohan Singh
Senior Congress leader Manmohan Singh on Wednesday called party colleague Ahmed Patel “one of the most trusted leaders of the Congress Party and a great friend of mine” as he remembered the Rajya Sabha lawmaker. Patel died earlier in the day at the age of 71.
Patel, who was critical since the last few days, was admitted to the Medanta Hospital in Gurugram on November 15 after he developed complications. His son Faisal said he died at 3.30am. The parliamentarian had tested positive for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) on October 1 and was hospitalised weeks later on November 15.
“I am saddened to hear the shocking news of the untimely death of Ahmed Patel. Ahmed Patel ji was one of the most trusted leaders of the Congress Party and a great friend of mine. His passing away is an irreparable loss to the Congress Party. My heartfelt condolences to the members of the bereaved family,” Singh, a former prime minister, said in a statement.
Ahmed Patel was among Congress’ key-strategists and held several important roles within the party. Patel was also an eight-time parliamentarian - he was a Rajya Sabha member from Gujarat five times and served as Lok Sabha MP thrice.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also shared his condolences and, in a tweet, highlighted Patel’s role in strengthening the Congress party. Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi called him ‘an irreplaceable friend and colleague’ in her statement.
Several Congress leaders paid their tributes to the parliamentarian. Congress’ Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi, who is currently in Guwahati to attend the final rites of another Congress veteran politician and former Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi, called Patel a “pillar of the Congress party”. Congress leader Kapil Sibal penned a small poem in memory of Ahmed Patel while Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said that his death “leaves an immense void.”
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