Congress leader Gurudas Kamat dies

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Senior Congress leader and former Union minister Gurudas Kamat died here after suffering a heart attack early today, family sources said.

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

The sources 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, they said.

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

Kamat wished people “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.

His sudden death sent shock waves in the Congress, with former president Pranab Mukherjee expressing shock over his 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 anguish. “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 the Mumbai and 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 as the minister.

He was also a former president of the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee.

PTI