Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel, a close aide of Sonia Gandhi, died at a Gurgaon hospital on Wednesday morning at the age of 71. The veteran politician had been at Medanta Hospital since his health worsened after a Covid-19 infection. In a tweet, his son Faisal Patel said that the Rajya Sabha MP from Gujarat died at 3.30am.
"With profound grief & sorrow, I regret to announce the sad and untimely demise of my father, Mr. Ahmed Patel at 25/11/2020, 03:30 AM. After testing positive for COVID-19 around a month back, his health worsened further due to multiple organ failures. May Allah grant him Jannatul firdaus, inshallah," he tweeted, requesting all their well-wishers to adhere to the COVID-19 regulations by avoiding mass gatherings.
Patel had announced on Twitter on October 1 that he contracted coronavirus. Last week, his daughter said he was stable and "significantly better" than at the time of hospitalisation.
Several political leaders expressed their condolences at the passing away of the Congress stalwart. Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted to say: "Saddened by the demise of Ahmed Patel Ji. He spent years in public life, serving society. Known for his sharp mind, his role in strengthening the Congress Party would always be remembered. Spoke to his son Faisal and expressed condolences. May Ahmed Bhai’s soul rest in peace."
Congress leaders Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and Rahul Gandhi also remembered Patel as a wise leader and a pillar of support.
Ahmed ji was not only a wise and experienced colleague to whom I constantly turned for advice and counsel, he was a friend who stood by us all, steadfast, loyal, and dependable to the end.
His passing away leaves an immense void. May his soul rest in peace.
— Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (@priyankagandhi) November 25, 2020
It is a sad day. Shri Ahmed Patel was a pillar of the Congress party. He lived and breathed Congress and stood with the party through its most difficult times. He was a tremendous asset.
We will miss him. My love and condolences to Faisal, Mumtaz & the family. pic.twitter.com/sZaOXOIMEX
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) November 25, 2020
Patel’s death comes just two days after the demise of another senior Congress leader and former Assam chief minister Tarun Gogoi. Gogoi, t84, too, had tested positive for Covid-19 in August and was rushed to hospital again, on November 2, after complaining of breathlessness.