Ahmed Patel: A low-profile troubleshooter and a high-power strategist

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New Delhi Ahmed Patel, the go-to individual for Congress leaders in occasions of disaster and often called the social gathering’s Chanakya for his political acumen, died early on Wednesday on the age of 71 of post-Covid-19 problems. His loss of life, introduced in a tweet by his son Faisal, was mourned by events reducing throughout ideological traces in a testomony to the extensive regard he commanded as a political tactician.

“With profound grief and sorrow, I remorse to announce the unhappy and premature demise of my father, Mr. Ahmed Patel at 25/11/2020 at 3:30am. After testing constructive for Covid-19 round a month again, his well being worsened additional attributable to a number of organ failure,” Faisal Patel tweeted.

The veteran Congress politician, a five-time member of the Rajya Sabha and two-time Lok Sabha member, had been admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) at Gurugram-based Medanta Hospital on November 15. Patel had, on October 1, introduced on Twitter that he had contracted the coronavirus illness and requested individuals who had not too long ago come into contact with him to to self-isolate.

The passing of Patel,who leaves behind his spouse, son and a daughter, is a blow to the Congress and its president Sonia Gandhi, whom he served as political secretary for practically 17 years. On Monday, former Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi, one other Congress veteran who rose from the grassroots and steered the state in direction of peace after many years of insurgency, died, additionally of Covid-19 problems.

Popularly often called Babu bhai, Ahmed bhai and AP in political circles, Patel had for many years been the chief disaster supervisor, the important thing bother shooter and political strategist of the Congress, whose leaders had been effusive in grieving his loss of life.

“I’ve misplaced an irreplaceable comrade, a trustworthy colleague and a buddy. I mourn his passing and I really feel deeply for his bereaved household to whom I supply my honest emotions of empathy and assist,” Sonia Gandhi stated.

Rahul Gandhi stated Patel “lived and breathed Congress” and stood with the social gathering by way of its most tough occasions. “It’s a unhappy day. Shri Ahmed Patel was a pillar of the Congress. He lived and breathed Congress and stood with the social gathering by way of its most tough occasions. He was an incredible asset,” he stated.

Congress common secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra described Patel as not solely a clever and skilled colleague to whom she always turned for recommendation and counsel but in addition a buddy “who stood by us all, steadfast, loyal, and reliable to the top”. Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh stated: “Ahmed Patel ji was one of the crucial trusted leaders of the Congress Occasion and an amazing buddy of mine. His passing away is an irreparable loss to the Congress Occasion.”

As a mark of respect to the departed chief, the Congress flag will fly at half-mast for the subsequent three days.

President Ram Nath Kovind, vice chairman M Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi joined Congress leaders and politicians from different events in mourning the loss of life of Patel in a uncommon show of unity that reduce throughout social gathering and ideological traces.

“An astute Parliamentarian, Shri Patel mixed the talents of a strategist and the attraction of a mass chief. His amiability gained him buddies throughout social gathering traces. My condolences to his household and buddies,” the President tweeted.

Naidu referred to as Patel an in a position parliamentarian who had all the time maintained cordial relations throughout the political spectrum. Modi tweeted: “Identified for his sharp thoughts, his function in strengthening the Congress Occasion would all the time be remembered. Spoke to his son Faisal and expressed condolences. Could Ahmed Bhai’s soul relaxation in peace.”

In a tweet, Bharatiya Janata Occasion (BJP) chief JP Nadda wrote: “Deeply anguished to listen to in regards to the demise of veteran Congress chief Shri Ahmed Patel Ji. I pray for energy to the members of the family and his supporters at this hour of grief. Om Shanti.”

Union ministers Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, Prakash Javadekar and Smriti Irani had been joined by a number of state chief ministers, each these dominated by the Congress and different events, and allies and rivals in paying tribute to Patel and providing their condolences to his household.

Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray stated Patel performed a distinguished function within the formation of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) authorities, comprising the Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Occasion and Congress, a 12 months in the past

“The Congress social gathering has misplaced its Chanakya in Patel’s demise, whereas the MVA authorities has misplaced a guiding gentle. I acquired assist from his expertise and steerage when the MVA authorities was shaped,” Thackeray stated.

It wasn’t solely In forging an unlikely coalition authorities in Maharashtra that Patel’s negotiating expertise had been evident. The veteran additionally performed a task in defusing a disaster brought on by a letter written in August by 23 senior Congress leaders together with his Rajya Sabha colleagues Ghulam Nabi Azad, Anand Sharma and Kapil Sibal calling for inner elections within the social gathering and introspection.

The letter was seen as an assault on the Gandhi household and crew Rahul Gandhi for his refusal to take cost of the social gathering. Patel helped thwart a possible riot, personally assembly Sibal and talking to Azad. Patel and his colleagues rigorously orchestrated a gathering of the Congress Working Committee on August 24, simply two days after the letter turned public, On the assembly, chief after chief praised Sonia Gandhi’s management and requested her to remain on as Congress chief till a brand new president is elected inside six months. Azad was attacked by most different members of the CWC and with the announcement of a timeline for inner elections, a right away disaster was averted.

The July disaster in Rajasthan brought on by a conflict between chief minister Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot blew over after Patel helped work out a compromise by organising a committee to have the latter’s grievances in opposition to the CM addressed. Pilot, who had gone AWOL with 18 MLAs, was again within the meeting every week later.

Patel additionally performed a pivotal function within the Manmohan Singh authorities successful the 2008 belief vote over the Indo-US nuclear deal, enlisting the assist of the Samajwadi Occasion to counter the menace posed by the lack of assist of the Left events, which bitterly opposed the deal.

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