NEWS
12/11/2018 2:13 PM IST | Updated 12/11/2018 2:15 PM IST

Ananth Kumar Passes Away: Condolences Pour In; President Kovind, PM Modi Pay Tribute

The Karnataka government has declared a three-day state mourning and a holiday on Monday as a mark of respect to Ananth Kumar

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
Ananth Kumar in a file photo.

Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar died at a private hospital in the early hours of Monday after battling lung cancer for several months.

The Karnataka government has declared a three-day state mourning and a holiday on Monday as a mark of respect to the leader. He was a long-time BJP leader, who was the first person to speak in Kannada in the United Nations.

His mortal remains would be placed at his residence in Basavanagudi for the entire day on Monday and his last rites will be performed on Tuesday, state BJP said in a statement.

His demise was condoled by all leaders cutting across party lines. BJP leaders, party workers, other politicians, and relatives made a beeline to pay homage to the "most loved" Bengaluru MP.

President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi also offered their condolences.

The president tweeted:

Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu also condoled Kumar's demise. In a message, he said that Kumar has been a valued colleague of him for years, right from the times of the students' movement to the Parliament.

Naidu added that he was a reputed parliamentarian, administrator and a captivating speaker and that his personality was multifaceted.

Modi condoled Kumar's demise and said he is "saddened by the passing away of my valued colleague and friend".

Congress president Rahul Gandhi, offering his condolences, tweeted:

BJP president Amit Shah said that Kumar "served the nation and organisation with unparalleled zeal and dedication". Union minister Rajnath Singh said his passion and devotion for the welfare of people was commendable, according to PTI.

Union minister Nirmala Sitharaman also paid her tributes and said that Kumar served the BJP all along.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also expressed sadness and offered condolences to Kumar's family, friends and supporters.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan also expressed his sympathies.

Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, according to PTI, said in a statement, "as union minister of parliamentary affairs, he [Kumar] was always focused on his job and managed the debates with a smile".

BJP Karnataka President BS Yeddyurappa said Kumar worked tirelessly to strengthen the BJP in the state and nation.

In his condolence message, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy said, "Our families had friendship beyond politics. He always valued and had given priority to friendship. I have lost a great friend in his death."

Kumaraswamy described him as a value-based politician, who made significant contribution to the country as an MP and union minister, according to PTI.

"His pro-people attitude and activities had made him apple of eyes of Bengalurians".

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said he was "shocked" by the "untimely" demise of Kumar.

Congress leader Ashok Chavan also tweeted his condolences: