Union Minister dies in Bengaluru after battling lung cancer for several months
Senior BJP leader and Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar, 59, died at a private hospital here in the early hours of Monday, party spokesman said. He was suffering from lung cancer and had come back from the US in October after treatment at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre, New York. He is survived by wife and two daughters.
The Karnataka Government has declared a three-day State mourning till November 14 as a mark of respect to Ananth Kumar. His last rites will be performed on Tuesday with all Government honour, an official release said.
Ananth had built the BJP in Karnataka and was the sole Member of Parliament from the State.
His political journey began from Vidhyarthi Parishat and graduated throvugh RSS to the national politics. Known for his integrity, Kumar had friends in the Congress and other parties.
As a Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister, his performance was appreciated by all. Even though he was identified as Advani’s man, he succeeded in getting close to Narendra Modi later.
Mourning the death of Ananth, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy said, “Ananth’s pro-people attitude and activities made him apple of the people’s eye.”
“He always valued and had given priority to friendship. I have lost a great friend in his death,” he said.
Ananth, was widely regarded as an able political organiser who helped the BJP expand its reach in country’s South.
His organisational skills and proficiency in Kannada, Hindi, Marathi and English caught the attention of the party’s top leaders like Atal Bihari Vajpayee and LK Advani, who made him a BJP national General Secretary at a young age.
An urban face of the BJP, Ananth was a six-time parliamentarian from the high-profile Bengaluru South Lok Sabha constituency since 1996. He became a Union Minister at a young age (37) in the Vajpayee’s Governments of 1998-99 and 1999-2004.
In the 1996 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP denied ticket to sitting MP renowned economist Professor K Venkatagiri Gowda from Bangalore South and fielded a new face, Ananth. The move raised eyebrows.
Ananth Kumar was just 36 years old, a newcomer and an ‘outsider’ from Hubli-Dharwad. The Congress had fielded Varalakshmi, the widow of former Chief Minister R Gundu Rao, against him. The Janata Dal, led by HD Deve Gowda, was in power in Karnataka. Most thought that Ananth had no chance against such formidable candidates from the Congress and the Janata Dal, though Bangalore South had the unique distinction of electing only the Opposition candidates for decades. Proving the sceptics wrong, Ananth Kumar, the blue-eyed boy of BS Yeddyurappa, won his maiden election, beating Varalakshmi Gundu Rao by a small margin.
Born into a middle class Brahmin family in Bengaluru on July 22, 1959, Kumar went to school in the city and joined college at Hubli when his father HN Narayan Shastry, a Railway employee, was transferred to the northwest town about 400 km from here. His mother Girja was a home-maker. Kumar graduated in Arts from KS Arts College and in Law from JSS Law College at Hubli with BA and LLB degrees from Karnataka University in Dharwad.
Tuesday, 13 November 2018 | Kestur Vasuki | Bengaluru–
Guv, CM condole Kumar’s demise
The Uttarakhand Governor Baby Rani Maurya and Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat have condoled the demise of Union Minister HN Ananth Kumar.
In her message, the governor said that Kumar was an able administrator and popular leader. He was a very experienced parliamentarian and his tenure as a union minister was also successful and mention worthy. His demise has caused an irrepairable loss to national politics and Karnataka, she said.
In his condolence message, CM Trivendra Singh Rawat said that following Kumar’s demise he had not only lost a friend but society had lost an able administrator and popular leader. Empathising with the bereaved family members, Rawat went on to state that Kumar was also a well-wisher of Uttarakhand. He had visited Uttarakhand to inaugurate CIPET at Doiwala in July. Decisions like providing 833 acre land of IDPL to Uttarakhand free of cost, approval to plastic recycling plant at Doiwala and plastic medical devises park at Sitarganj show his special affection for Uttarakhand, said Rawat. read more posts…
Tuesday, 13 November 2018 | PNS | Dehradun–
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