'Cruel fate': Sonia condoles demise of TN polls Cong candidate due to COVID-19

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New Delhi, Apr 11 (PTI) Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Sunday condoled the demise of P S W Madhava Rao, the party's assembly polls candidate from Srivilliputhur constituency in Tamil Nadu who died due to COVID-19 complications, and hailed his dedication and loyalty to the party.

In a letter to Rao's daughter Dhivya Rao, Gandhi said she was deeply shocked and saddened to learn of the passing away of a dedicated and loyal Congress leader after having fallen victim to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Madhava Rao was 63 years old and is survived by his daughter. He died at a private hospital in Madurai this morning where he was admitted on March 20 for treatment, Rao's son-in-law K Rajiv told PTI.

'A low profile and a hard-working Congressman, Madhava Rao, was our party's candidate from the reserved assembly constituency of Srivilliputhur in the just concluded assembly polls,' Sonia Gandhi said in her letter to his daughter.

'Despite his hospitalisation in the middle of the campaign, you had taken upon yourself the responsibility to campaign for him so hard and garnered support from every section of the society that we were not only expecting Madhava Rao to come out of the hospital safely soon but also come out victorious in the election on 2nd May,' Gandhi said.

But the cruel fate had something else in store and have all been left bereaved, the Congress chief said.

'My heart goes out to you and your family and the entire Congress party stands with you all in this hour of grief. His service to the Congress party would be remembered,' she said.

While polls were held on April 6, the counting of votes is scheduled on May 2 and in case the Congress nominee emerged victorious, Srivilliputhur segment would face a bypoll later. PTI ASK ANB ANB