New Delhi : Former Delhi Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Sheila Dikshit died here on Saturday following a cardiac arrest.
President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress President Rahul Gandhi and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal were among leaders who condoled her death. Gandhi described her as “beloved daughter of Congress party”.
Dikshit, 81, was the longest-serving Chief Minister of Delhi, having served in office for 15 years from 1998.
She was appointed Delhi Congress Committee earlier this year ahead of Lok Sabha polls. She contested from North East Delhi but lost. Dikshit had also projected party’s chief ministerial candidate in Uttar Pradesh before Congress allied with Samajwadi Party ahead of last assembly polls.
A statement issued by Fortis Escorts Heart Institute, where she was admitted on Saturday morning, said she was brought “in a critical condition with cardiac arrest”.
“A multi-disciplinary team of doctors, led by Dr Ashok Seth, Chairman, Fortis Escorts Heart Institute, carried out the advanced resuscitative measures. Her condition stabilised temporarily. However, she had another cardiac arrest and despite all the resuscitative efforts, passed away at 3:55 pm on 20th,” it said,” it said.
Dikshit had three bypass surgeries and had been in and out of hospital of late as she was not keeping well. She attended a political meeting on Thursday.
Dikshit’s death caused a wave of shock in the Congress with party leaders remembering her dedication towards the party and her administrative abilities.
Dikshit shared a special bond with Rahul Gandhi who said he was devastated to learn of her death.
“I’m devastated to hear about the passing away of Shiela Dikshitji, a beloved daughter of the Congress Party, with whom I shared a close personal bond. My condolences to her family and the citizens of Delhi, whom she served selflessly as a 3 term CM, in this time of great grief,” Gandhi said in a tweet.
Kovind said she will be remembered for “momentous transformation” of the national capital during her terms as chief minister.
“Sad to hear of the passing of Sheila Dikshit, former Chief Minister of Delhi and a senior political figure. Her term in office was a period of momentous transformation for the capital for which she will be remembered. Condolences to her family and associates,” he tweeted.
Modi recalled her warm and affable personality and said she made noteworthy contribution to Delhi’s development.
“Deeply saddened by the demise of Sheila Dikshitji. Blessed with a warm and affable personality, she made a noteworthy contribution to Delhi’s development. Condolences to her family and supporters. Om Shanti,” he said in a tweet.
Kejriwal said in a tweet that her demise was a huge loss to Delhi.
“Just now got to know about the extremely terrible news about the passing away of Mrs Sheila Dikshit ji. It is a huge loss for Delhi and her contribution will always be remembered. My heartfelt condolences to her family members. May her soul rest in peace,” he said.
National Conference leader Omar Abdullah said Dikshit did wonders for Delhi as Chief Minister and will be greatly missed by all who knew her.
PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti said she was one of the tallest leaders in Congress and transformed Delhi in her tenure as Chief Minister.
Party treasurer Ahmed Patel described Dikshit as a born fighter who immersed herself in public service till her last breath.
“Distressed to learn about the passing away of Sheilaji. She was a born fighter who immersed herself in public service till her last breath. In her demise, Delhi and the nation have lost an able administrator & compassionate leader,” he said in a tweet.
He also said her tenure as Chief Minister will be remembered as “the golden era in Delhi’s development”.
Congress’ east UP general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday expressed sorrow over the demise of former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on Saturday, saying that she would always be remembered for her works.