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Rajasthan BJP leader Digamber Singh passes away at 66

He was suffering from cancer and passed away on Friday morning.

jaipur Updated: Oct 27, 2017 18:39 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Digamber Singh,Rajendra Rathore,Vasundhara Raje
BJP leader Dr Digmabar Singh. (HT File Photo)

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Dr Digamber Singh passed away here on Friday after a prolonged illness. Singh, who was the vice-chairman of the Twenty Point Programme implementation committee, is survived by wife Asha Singh and son Dr Shailesh Singh.

The state government announced state mourning for a day in Bharatpur, where he was cremated with full state honours.

Singh’s family said that he has been fighting pancreatic cancer for three years. The 66-year-old leader was taken to Jaipur’s Eternal Heart Care Centre (EHCC) on October 18 when he complained of chest pain. Doctors said that he died of multiple organ failure around 10.30 am.

Chief minister Vasundhara Raje and senior members of her cabinet Rajendra Rathore and Gulab Chand Kataria and state BJP president Ashok Parnami visited the hospital after hearing news about the veteran leader’s demise.

Singh’s body was taken to his house in Bharatpur for people to pay their tributes. Raje, along with her cabinet colleagues, went to Bharatpur.

Congress leader Vishvendra Singh condoles Digamber Singh’s family members in Bharatpur on Friday. (HT Photo)

State Congress vice president and former Bharatpur royal Vishvendra Singh also visited the family. Several other leaders from both parties were also present in Bharatpur to pay their last respects.

Singh was cremated around 5.30 pm at Dr Digamber Singh Nursing College on the Jaipur-Agra national highway near Ludhawai.

He was appointed vice-chairman of the Twenty Point Programme state-level committee in June 2015 and had the status of a cabinet minister. The chief minister is chairman of the committee.

Dr Digambar Singh’s last rites being performed on Friday. (HT Photo)

Singh, considered an influential Jat leader from eastern Rajasthan, was health and industry minister during Vasundhara Raje’s previous tenure as CM from 2003 to 2008.

“Singh’s demise is a personal loss. He was a mass leader,” Raje said. She said Singh worked with her for a long time and was with her even in her difficult times.

“His simplicity, honesty, helpful and friendly nature is worth following,” she said. She said Singh raised the issue of reservation for Jats of Bharatpur and Dholpur. “His demise has brought irreparable loss to the party,” she added.

Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje offers floral tribute to late Dr Digamber Singh on Friday. (HT Photo)

Condoling Singh’s death, BJP chief Amit Shah tweeted, “Deeply pained to know about the sad demise of senior BJP leader and former minister Dr Digamber Singh. His passing away a big loss to BJP.”

State BJP President Ashok Parnami said Singh’s demise is an irreparable loss. “He was a strong leader and a prominent farmer leader. Former chief minister Ashok Gehlot said Singh was a true politician who was always concerned about farmers.”

Leader of Opposition Rameshwar Dudi said Singh’s demise is a loss to the state. “As a politician, he was sensitive and committed to the public. He was lively, welcoming, friendly and social person,” Dudi added.

State BJP has lost five of its leaders this year. Ajmer MP Sanwar Lal Jat, Alwar MP Chand Nath, Mandalgarh MLA Kirti Kumari and Khadi Board chairman Shambhu Dayal Badgujjar.

First Published: Oct 27, 2017 18:38 IST