Jalandhar: Congress MP Santokh Singh Chaudhary died this morning while he was walking with all the Yatries of Bharat Jodo Yatra. He was seen walking alongside senior party leader Rahul Gandhi on Saturday morning before he collapsed and passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest. The Jalandhar MP and Rahul Gandhi can be seen strolling alongside at the Yatra in a video from the party’s outreach campaign before another person switches sides with Chaudhary to speak with the former party leader.
“Chaudhary was walking along with a Congress MP from Kerala when he suddenly collapsed after suffering a massive cardiac arrest,” said Partap Singh Bajwa, Leader of Opposition of Punjab.
He was rushed to civil hospital in Phagwara where he was declared brought dead. The body was taken to his Jalandhar residence.
After the sudden demise of Santokh Singh, the party suspended the ongoing Bharat Jodo Yatra on Saturday. Rahul Gandhi’s press conference in Jalandhar scheduled for Sunday, too has been cancelled.
Rahul Gandhi on Congress MP’s demise said, “He was a down to earth hardworking leader, a pious person and a strong pillar of the Congress family, who dedicated his life to public service from Youth Congress to Member of Parliament.”
He added, “I express my condolences to the bereaved family.”
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Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge said, “Santokh Singh Chaudhary’s death was a great blow to the party and organization.”
Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh Raja Warring said the last rites of the MP will be performed on Sunday and the yatra will remain suspended till then.
“The yatra is suspended for today. The last rites will be held tomorrow. I have not spoken to Rahul Gandhi yet but we all feel that the yatra should resume after the last rites. Till the last rites are suspended, it will remain suspended,” the Punjab Congress chief told reporters.
The Yatra will be suspended for 24 hours out of respect for Choudhary, as per Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh, who is also in charge of communications. It will resume from the Khalsa College Ground in Jalandhar tomorrow afternoon.
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