Former chief minister of Delhi Sheila Dikshit died on Saturday in Delhi. She was 81.
Dikshit was admitted to Fortis Escorts Heart Institute, Delhi, on Friday. She had cardiac arrhythmia (irregular heart beat) and was immediately put on ventilator, reported Mint. She underwent a heart surgery in France last year.
“We regret to hear of the passing of Smt Sheila Dikshit,” the Congress tweeted. “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.”
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, whom she was considered particularly close to, said he was devastated to hear the news. “I’m devastated to hear about the passing away of Sheila Dikshit Ji, a beloved daughter of the Congress Party, with whom I shared a close personal bond,” Gandhi said in a tweet. “My condolences to her family & the citizens of Delhi, whom she served selflessly as a 3 term CM, in this time of great grief.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind were among several leaders to express their condolence after Dikshit’s death.
“Deeply saddened by the demise of Sheila Dikshit Ji,” Modi said in a tweet. “Blessed with a warm and affable personality, she made a noteworthy contribution to Delhi’s development. Condolences to her family and supporters. Om Shanti.”
“Sad to hear of the passing of Smt Sheila Dikshit, former Chief Minister of Delhi and a senior political figure,” President Kovind tweeted. “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.”
Vice President Venkaiah Naidu called Dikshit a “ good administrator” and expressed his condolences.
Dikshit served as the chief minister of Delhi for 15 years from 1998 to 2013. She was the longest serving chief minister of Delhi. She was succeeded by Aam Aadmi Party’s Arvind Kejriwal.
Kejriwal called her demise a “huge loss”. “Just now got to know about the extremely terrible news about the passing away of Mrs Sheila Dikshit ji,” Kejriwal tweeted. “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.”
In January, Dikshit was appointed the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee chief after Ajay Maken stepped down from the post. In the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections, Dikshit contested from the North East Delhi seat but had to concede defeat to Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party chief Manoj Tiwari. He had won by a margin of over 3.66 lakh votes.
Dikshit was credited for changing the infrastructure of Delhi and for making the public transport system better as well as development in health and educational fronts.