Akhilesh Das Gupta, former Union Minister and Badminton Association of India (BAI) president, died in Lucknow on Wednesday following cardiac arrest, reported PTI. He was 56.

Gupta suffered massive heart attack and was rushed to the Lari hospital, Congress sources said.

Gupta was a Rajya Sabha member and was Minister for Steels in Congress government and had also been Mayor of Lucknow.

In 2012, Gupta had become the Badminton Association of India (BAI) president after the arrest of former chief V K Verma over corruption charges in the 2010 Commonwealth Games. He was unanimously re-elected for a four-year term in 2014. In 2016, he was also elected the vice-president of the Badminton Asia Confederation (BAC) for a four-year term.

Under the tenure of Das, India got the rights to host marquee Badminton World Federation (BWF) events like the 2014 Thomas/Uber Cup and the Super Series, while the Syed Modi international was upgraded to a Grand Prix gold status.

Das was also instrumental in launching and organising the Indian Badminton League in August 2013, which was later rechristened to Premier Badminton League in 2015.

Gupta, son of former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Banarsi Das Gupta, is survived by his wife, daughter and son.