22/08/2018 12:50 PM IST | Updated 31/01/2019 4:25 PM IST

Senior Congress Leader Gurudas Kamat Dies

The former Union minister, 63, died on the way to hospital.

The India Today Group via Getty Images
Congress leader Gurudas Kamat in a file photo.

NEW DELHI -- Senior Congress leader and former Union minister Gurudas Kamat died here after suffering a heart attack early on Wednesday, family members said.

Kamat, 63, was taken to Primus Hospital in Chanakyapuri around 7 am after he complained of breathlessness, but he died on the way.

The family members said he was given tea by his staff in the morning when he complained of sudden breathlessness and was immediately rushed to the hospital by his driver.

He was alone at his Vasant Enclave private residence at the time. His family rushed from Mumbai to take the body back.

Kamat had wished his followers "Eid Mubarak" on Twitter last night. His last tweet was at 11.44 pm wishing happiness on the occasion of Eid-Al-Adha.

UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi visited the hospital and paid her last respects to the departed leader.

Former president Pranab Mukherjee expressed his shock over Kamat's untimely demise.

"Shocked and pained at the sudden and untimely demise of Shri Gurudas Kamat. A colleague in the government and the party for many years, his passing away at such young age is tragic," Mukherjee said in a tweet.

Home minister Rajnath Singh also expressed his sadness. "Anguished by the sudden demise of former Union minister and senior Congress leader Shri Gurudas Kamat. He was a seasoned leader who had also served the nation as the MoS in the MHA. My thoughts are with his family and supporters," he said on Twitter.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said, "Shocked and deeply anguished to learn about the sudden demise of Congress Leader Sh Gurudas Kamat ji. No words are enough to describe the sense of loss. My deepest condolences to his family, friends and followers. I pray for the departed soul."

A five-time member of Parliament from Mumbai, Kamat was also the president of the NSUI from 1976 to 1980.

He was the Union minister of state for home affairs with the additional charge of communications and information technology from 2009 to 2011. In July 2011, he resigned from the post.

An advocate by training, Kamat was also a former president of the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee.