Union Rural Development Minister Gopinath Munde passed away on Tuesday morning after he met with a road accident in the national capital.
64-year-old Munde was on his way to airport when his car was hit by another vehicle at around 6:30 a.m. at Prithviraj road-Tughlak road roundabout in the heart of the capital, said Union Minster Nitin Gadkari. He was rushed to AIIMS where doctors declared him dead around 7:50, said Gadkari.
Though Munde did not suffer any injuries, he apparently suffered a shock in the impact of accident. Munde asked for water from his security guard Nair who was sitting in front of the car and told him to take him to the hospital.
President Pranab Mukherjee condoles his death. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was extremely saddened and shocked by demise of his friend.
Munde’s family members have left Mumbai for New Delhi. His body will be flown to Latur in the afternoon and later taken to his native place in Parli. His funeral will take place at his village in Latur tommorow, says Union Minster Nitin Gadkari.
Gopinath Munde, with five terms as MLA in the Maharashtra legislature and in his second term as the MP from Beed, Maharashtra, was one of Maharashtra’s most prominent Bharatiya Janata Party leaders.
GOPINATH MUNDE PROFILE :
Gopinath Pandurang Munde was born in 12 December 1949 and was the famous OBC face in Maharashtra Politics.
A brother-in-law of slain BJP leader Pramod Mahajan, Munde hails from a poor family in the backward Marathwada region and was brought into politics by the late BJP leader Vasantrao Bhagwat, who also groomed several other youngsters including Pramod Mahajan.
Munde got involved into Politics when he met Pramod Mahajan. As a member of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, he took part in the agitation against the state of emergency imposed by the Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. He was incarcerated in the Nashik central jail until the Emergency was lifted.
In 1971, he associated with the campaign of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh candidate in the Lok Sabha election in the Beed constituency.
Munde, who was the Deputy Leader of Opposition in 15th Lok Sabha, won this time despite NCP chief Sharad Pawar making the Beed seat a prestige issue.
With Munde being a known detractor of Pawar in state politics, Pawar launched his poll campaign from Beed in favour of NCP nominee Suresh Dhus whose challenged collapsed despite Munde’s nephew Dhananjay being his campaign manager.
A five time MLA, Munde’s heart has always been in the state politics and harbours the ambition of becoming first BJP Chief Minister of Maharashtra.
He was a Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) for five terms during 1980-1985 and 1990-2009.
He was also the Leader of Opposition in Maharashtra Legislative Assembly during 1992-1995. He has held the post of Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra in 1995-1999.
A general secretary of the party at the national level, he was Chairman of the Committee on Chemicals and Fertilisers in last Lok Sabha.
He left behind his wife and three daughters and one of them- Pankaja Palave- represents the Parli assembly seat.