Sharad Yadav was voice of the repressed, his absence will be felt: Nadda

New Delhi | Updated: 13 January, 2023 1:33 pm IST
BJP president JP Nadda at the residence of late socialist leader Sharad Yadav in Delhi.

A galaxy of leaders from across the political spectrum on Friday descended on the residence of socialist stalwart Sharad Yadav in Delhi to pay their last respect to the former Union minister, with BJP president JP Nadda hailing him as the “leading voice of the oppressed”.

Apart from Nadda, Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar, Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, former Bihar CM and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Rabri Devi, Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Kumari Shelja, and Anil Chaudhary paid him floral tributes at his residence in Delhi’s Chhatarpur.

Former Bihar CM Rabri Devi pays floral tributes to Sharad Yadav. (TNI photo by Amit Rawat)

Yadav breathed his last at Gurugram’s Fortis Hospital at the age of 75 years on Thursday night. He had been for the last few weeks.

Speaking to the media at Yadav’s residence, BJP chief Nadda said that the departed leader was a “leading voice of the oppressed section of society”.

“We will always miss his presence in Indian politics. His commitment to the welfare of people and fight for socialist ideology throughout his life will continue to inspire us,” he said.

Hailing the RJD leader as a “great human being”, the BJP president described him as an eloquent speaker and a straightforward person. “He was a leading voice of the downtrodden, Dalits, backwards, and the poor.”

RJD leader Rabri Devi consoling Sharad Yadav’s daughter Subhashini (TNI photo by Amit Rawat).

Nadda further said that he had political and ideological differences with Yadav, who served as a Union minister under PMs VP Singh and Atal Bihari Vajpayee. “But his commitment towards the welfare of common people, his colleagues and supporters is worth following,” Nadda said.

According to reports, Yadav was brought to the emergency ward of the hospital in an “unconscious and unresponsive state” without any pulse or recordable blood pressure.

Despite the best efforts, he could not be revived and was declared dead at 10.19 pm on Thursday. His daughter Subhashini Sharad Yadav broke the news with the tweet: “Papa nahi rahe (Papa is no more).”

In a statement, his family said that Sharad Yadav’s last rites will be performed in his native village Aankh Mau in Hoshangabad of Madhya Pradesh on Saturday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was one of the first to express condolences on the demise of the veteran leader.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi trying to console Yadav’s family.

“Pained by the passing away of Shri Sharad Yadav Ji. In his long years in public life, he distinguished himself as MP and Minister. He was greatly inspired by Dr. Lohia’s ideals. I will always cherish our interactions. Condolences to his family and admirers,” PM Modi tweeted.

During his long political career, Yadav held several important positions. Between 1999 and 2004, Yadav held portfolios as Union minister of civil aviation and as Union minister of consumer affairs, food and public distribution in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

In 2003, Yadav became the president of Janata Dal-United (JDU). He and Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar shared a warm relationship. Kumar also helped Yadav get a Rajya Sabha seat following his defeat in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections.

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