Former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee no more
Kolkata: Former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee passed away at a private hospital in Kolkata. He was 89.
He was suffering from kidney ailment and had been in critical condition for past few days. Since August 8, Chatterjee had been put on ventilator.
He was Speaker of the Lok Sabha from 2004 to 2009.
A 10-time Lok Sabha MP, Chatterjee was a central committee member of the CPI(M), which he had joined in 1968. He was, however, expelled from the CPI(M) in 2008 for refusing to resign as the Speaker of the Lok Sabha after his party withdrew support to the UPA-I government.
Condolences poured in following the death of Chatterjee. President of India Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief over the demise of the veteran politician in twitter messages.
Sorry to hear of the passing of Shri Somnath Chatterjee, former Speaker of the Lok Sabha and a veteran parliamentarian who had a forceful presence in the House. A loss for public life in Bengal and India. My condolences to his family and innumerable well-wishers #PresidentKovind
— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) August 13, 2018
Former MP and Speaker Shri Somnath Chatterjee was a stalwart of Indian politics. He made our Parliamentary democracy richer and was a strong voice for the well-being of the poor and vulnerable. Anguished by his demise. My thoughts are with his family and supporters.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 13, 2018
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and AICC President Rahul Gandhi also condoled Chatterjee’s death.
Deeply saddened to learn of the demise of former Lok Sabha Speaker and senior leader, Shri Somnath Chatterjee. An erudite & seasoned parliamentarian, Somnathda was known for value based politics. He rose above partisan politics on several occasions. My condolences to his family.
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) August 13, 2018
I mourn the passing away of Shri Somnath Chatterjee, 10 term MP and former Speaker of the Lok Sabha. He was an institution. Greatly respected and admired by all parliamentarians, across party lines. My condolences to his family at this time of grief. #SomnathChatterjee
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) August 13, 2018
In a twitter message, Chief Minister and BJD chief Naveen Patnaik expressed sadness on the demise of the former Lok Sabha Speaker.
Shocked and extremely sad to learn the passing away of Shri #SomnathChatterjee. A stalwart parliamentarian, popular amongst people and one of greatest Speakers of Lok Sabha. A huge loss to the Indian democracy. May his family and near & dear ones get the strength to cope. #RIP
— Naveen Patnaik (@Naveen_Odisha) August 13, 2018
Former Kendrapara MP Baijayant Panda also mourned the death of Chatterjee.
Saddened to hear of #SomnathChatterjee 's passing. I was privileged to interact with him closely even pre-politics, bringing him to Odisha for major '90s events. & as Speaker he began a renaissance of the office, setting ethical precedents that are still followed
Om Shanti 🙏🙏🙏
— Baijayant Jay Panda (@PandaJay) August 13, 2018