Thursday, Dec 01, 2022

Leaders Pay Tribute To George Fernandes, Last Rites To Be Held Tomorrow

Leaders Pay Tribute To George Fernandes, Last Rites To Be Held Tomorrow

Leaders of India on Tuesday condoled the demise of former union minister and socialist leader George Fernandes.

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The last rites of former Defence Minister George Fernandes, who passed away due to prolonged illness on Tuesday morning at the age of 88, will be performed on Wednesday, said social activist and former Samata Party president Jaya Jaitly.

Leaders of India on Tuesday condoled the demise of former union minister and socialist leader George Fernandes, saying he was frank and fearless and never deviated from his ideology.

The 88-year-old former defence minister died here after suffering from a prolonged illness.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who is the Janata Dal-United chief and has worked closely with Fernandes for three decades, described his death as the "loss of the tallest socialist leader". 

In a series of tweets, PM Modi said, "George Sahab" represented the best of India's political leadership.

"Frank and fearless, forthright and farsighted, he made a valuable contribution to our country. He was among the most effective voices for the rights of the poor and marginalised," he said.

Modi said, "When we think of Fernandes, we remember most notably the fiery trade union leader who fought for justice, the leader who could humble the mightiest of politicians at the hustings".

"A visionary railway minister and a great defence minister who made India safe and strong. During his long years in public life, George Sahab never deviated from his political ideology. He resisted the Emergency tooth and nail. His simplicity and humility were noteworthy," the PM said.

Abhishek Singhvi quoting George Fernandes wrote, "One should learn from the past, but one should not live in the past. My concern is to look to the future, learn from the past, and deal with the present.
The nation has lost a veteran political fighter. May his soul rest in peace."

Suresh Prabhu tweeted a tread of tributes dedicated to the former minister and wrote, "Saddened by the demise of George Fernandes Ji - a stalwart of Indian politics, an able administrator and above all, a people’s person."

"He was the creator of Konkan Railways as Railway minister - when all others in Finance and other Ministries opposed it, he single-handedly did it, picked up Mr Sridharan, created a separate corporation to execute it, raised bonds by public meetings George Fernandes"

"We have lost a great man and a great leader today. #GeorgeFernandes was the epitome of bravery, compassion and honesty. The fiery socialist, our former defence minister, protected citizens from both external and internal threats. I express my deepest condolences." tweeted Harsimrat Kaur Badal.

Sharad Yadav said, "Deeply saddened on his demise. My association with him was for more than four decades. He was a role model for me. He always fought for d welfare of labour class & underprivileged classes. His contribution to Indian politics & Parliament will never be forgotten."

Upendra Kunshwaha expressed his gratitude and wrote, "My prayers for George Fernandes Sahab. May his soul rest in heavenly peace. George Sahab's sacrifice for the downtrodden would be remembered for ages. His life is also a message for people like us who have to fight the Big and Mighty in spite of all adversities."

West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee tweeted that she was "very saddened" at Fernandes passing away and recalled him as the "much admired trade unionist", whom she had known for decades.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in his message recalled the services of Fernandes as a dedicated leader who discharged his duties as a minister in the Government of India to the best of his abilities.

Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy in his statement said: "Saddened to hear about the death of former Union Minister George Fernandes. A socialist and stalwart in politics, he will be remembered by people of Karnataka for his contribution to the Konkan Railway project."

(With Inputs from Agencies)