Big Loss For BJP! Ananth Kumar, Great Asset To BJP No More!

Big Loss For BJP! Ananth Kumar, Great Asset To BJP No More! Here’s why he was great asset to BJP!
Big Loss For BJP! Ananth Kumar, Great Asset To BJP No More! Here’s why he was great asset to BJP!

Ananth Kumar,  Union minister in the Narendra Modi cabinet and BJP’s leader in Karnataka, passed away in Bengaluru in the early hours of Monday. He was 59. Kumar had been battling lung cancer for several months. The senior BJP leader had been on a ventilator in the Intensive Care Unit for the last few days. The National Flag will fly at half mast throughout the country today and Kumar will be accorded a state funeral. A three-day state mourning has been declared in Karnataka.

Kumar breathed his last at around 2 am with his wife Tejaswini and two daughters by his bedside, Sankara Hospital Director Nagaraj told PTI. He returned to Bengaluru only recently after undergoing treatment in the United States and Britain.

Kumar served as Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers since May 2014 and Minister for Parliamentary Affairs since July 2016. He represented the Bengaluru South constituency in Lok Sabha. The state BJP said Kumar’s body will be kept at the National College Ground for public to pay their last respects.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi described him as a remarkable leader, an able administrator and a great asset to the BJP.

Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy said Mr Kumar was a “friend beyond politics” and a value-based politician. “Our families had a friendship beyond politics. He always valued and had given priority to friendship. I have lost a great friend in his death,” the chief minister added.

A graduate in Arts and Law, Mr Kumar was associated with the Akhila Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), a student organisation of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), before joining the BJP in 1987.

As a student activist, he was also jailed along with other ABVP leaders during the Emergency of 1975.

He was elected to the Lok Sabha in 1996. In 1998, he became the youngest member of the Vajpayee cabinet and he returned as minister in 1999.

In 2003, he became the BJP’s Karnataka chief. The party won the highest number of seats in the assembly and the Lok Sabha under his stewardship.

The parliamentarian from south Bengaluru constituency held charge of two ministries in the Narendra Modi government — Chemicals and Fertilisers since May 2014 and Parliamentary Affairs since July 2016.

Union Minister DV Sadananda Gowda expressed grief over his death. “Shocked, it’s unbelievable. My friend, brother Ananth Kumar is no more,” he wrote.

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also expressed sorrow over his death. “Deep sense of grief on hearing that Shri Ananth Kumar is no more with us. Served BJP all along. Bengaluru was in his head and heart, always. May God give his family the strength to bear with this loss,” she tweeted.

Opposition leaders Rahul Gandhi, Mamata Banerjee and Arvind Kejriwal have also offered their condolences.

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