Arun Jaitley, former finance minister, dies at 66; cremation tomorrow
Former Union finance minister Arun Jaitley died of multiple organ failure at Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences on Saturday afternoon. He was 66.
A stalwart of the BJP, Jaitley was admitted to AIIMS on August 9, after he complained of uneasiness. A short statement by AIIMS said Jaitley died at 12:07 pm this afternoon.
“It is with profound grief that we inform about the sad demise of Shri Arun Jaitley, Hon’ble Member of Parliament & Former Finance Minister, Government of India at 12:07 pm on 24th August, 2019. Shri Arun Jaitley was admitted in AIIMS, New Delhi on 09/08/2019 and was treated by a multidisciplinary team of senior Doctors,” read the press release.
BJP leader Sudhanshu Mittal said that the cremation will take place on Sunday afternoon at the Nigambodh Ghat.
Arun Jaitley was admitted into AIIMS’ intensive care unit (ICU) and was treated by a multi-disciplinary team of doctors after he complained of uneasiness; he was put on life-support system after his condition deteriorated.
Jaitley had opted out of the government citing poor health when the second National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi took oath.
RIP Arun Jaitley: Former finance minister and BJP stalwart dies at 66
Prime Minister Narendra Modi mourned the death of Arun Jaitley, saying he has lost a valued friend.
“With the demise of Arun Jaitley Ji, I have lost a valued friend, whom I have had the honour of knowing for decades. His insight on issues and nuanced understanding of matters had very few parallels. He lived well, leaving us all with innumerable happy memories. We will miss him!” tweeted PM Modi, who is in the UAE on the second leg of a three-nation visit.
Political leaders across the political spectrum, mourned the BJP leader’s passing away.
Condoling Jaitley’s death, Congress president Sonia Gandhi said “his contributions to public life will be forever remembered”.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said, “Extremely saddened at the passing away of Arun Jaitley Ji, after a battle bravely borne. An outstanding Parliamentarian & a brilliant lawyer, appreciated across parties. His contribution to Indian polity will be remembered. My condolences to his wife, children, friends & admirers.”
Jaitley has had a history of medical conditions, including diabetes and kidney failure. He underwent a kidney transplant last year in May, and a bariatric surgery in September 2014.
Jaitley was among the first to realise the potential of Narendra Modi in the BJP, and the two stayed together through thick and thin. After becoming the PM in 2014, Modi handed over the finance, defence and corporate affairs portfolios to Jaitley, a clear sign of the trust on him.