Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) leader Ram Vilas Paswan passed away in a Delhi hospital on Thursday. He was 74.
The Union Minister, who recently underwent heart surgery, was due to undergo another surgery in a few days, his son and LJP chief Chirag Paswan told media.
"Miss you Papa," Chirag Paswan posted on Twittter, with a picture of him as a young child being hugged by his father.
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Miss you Papa... pic.twitter.com/Qc9wF6Jl6Z
Ram Vilas Paswan was one of the most recognized Dalit leaders in the country with a career spanning over five decades. He founded the LJP in 2000 and joined the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance in 2004.
Paswan began his political career with Samyukta Socialist Party, and was elected as a Member of Parliament eight times. He was serving as the Union Minister of Food and Public Distribution in the Narendra Modi-led NDA government.
Various leaders from across the political spectrum expressed their condolences, including President Ramnath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
I am saddened beyond words. There is a void in our nation that will perhaps never be filled. Shri Ram Vilas Paswan Ji’s demise is a personal loss. I have lost a friend, valued colleague and someone who was extremely passionate to ensure every poor person leads a life of dignity. pic.twitter.com/2UUuPBjBrj— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 8, 2020
"With the demise of Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, the country has lost a visionary leader," wrote President Kovind.
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"Deeply anguished by the demise of Union Minister, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan Ji." said Vice President Venkaiah Naidu." He was an exemplary leader who served the people and nation till his last breath. He was a distinguished parliamentarian and always strove for the empowerment of the marginalised. His death is a personal loss to me as I have had a long and enriching association with him full of many pleasant memories that I deeply cherish. My deepest condolences to the bereaved family members."
Home Minister Amit Shah, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar were among the number of political leaders who expressed their condolences.
After leading LJP for 19 years Paswan decided to step down from his post last year and appointed his son Chirag Paswan as the new party president. Party sources said the leader's mortal remains would be taken from Delhi to Patna around 11am on Friday.
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