Political News, Nation, (New Delhi), July 20:-Senior Congress leader and former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit died on Saturday at the age of 81 years.
Dikshit, a veteran politician, was the Delhi party chief during the Lok Sabha elections. The three-time former chief minister was appointed president of the city unit after the incumbent Ajay Maken stepped down citing health issues in January this year.
Despite being an octagenarian, Sheila Dikshit led the party in the Lok Sabha polls and herself contested against Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari from the North East Delhi seat. She lost by over 3.66 lakh votes.
The Congress had lost all seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi to the BJP with huge margins. However, under Dikshit’s leadership the party managed to push Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidates to the third place in five of the seven seats, besides registering a growth in its vote share.
After the Congress’ defeat in Delhi, Sheila Dikshit had offered her resignation to the party president but it was not accepted.
“We regret to hear of the passing of Smt Sheila Dikshit,” the Congress said in a tweet. “Lifelong congresswoman and as three time CM of Delhi she transformed the face of Delhi. Our condolences to her family and friends. Hope they find strength in this time of grief.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was deeply saddened by the Dikshit’s demise. “Blessed with a warm and affable personality, she made a noteworthy contribution to Delhi’s development. Condolences to her family and supporters.”
A number of politicians, including Rahul Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, National Conference’s Omar Abdullah, Peoples Democratic Party’s Mehbooba expressed their grief and offered their condolences.
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh also expressed his shock at the demise. “In her death, the country has lost a dedicated Congress Leader of the masses. People of Delhi will always remember her contribution to the development Delhi during her tenure as Chief Minister for three years,” he said in a statement.
-(NAV, Inputs: Agencies)