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PM, Sonia pay their last respects
Vijay Singh in Mumbai |
May 25, 2005 18:28 IST
Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday paid their last respects to Union minister and veteran actor Sunil Dutt, who passed away in his sleep early in the morning.
Dr Singh and Gandhi, accompanied by senior cabinet ministers Sharad Pawar, Pranab Mukherjee and Shivraj Patil, arrived in Mumbai by a special plane and drove straight to the Dutts' Pali Hill residence.
Also see: Prez, VP, PM condole Dutt's death
None of the leaders spoke to the waiting journalists.
Dutt passed away after a heart attack at his home in Bandra, northwest Mumbai. He would have turned 75 on June 6.
A five-time MP, Dutt contested his first Lok Sabha election after joining the Congress in 1984. Winning the Mumbai North West seat in his maiden attempt, he retained it in the 1989 and 1991 elections. He did not contest the 1996 and 1998 elections as he was preoccupied with a case against his son Sanjay by the Mumbai police. He won the 1999, 2000 and 2004 elections.
Also see: 'I feel bad about getting old'
He became a Union minister for the first time last year. As a minister, Dutt not only had time to hear the plight of sportspersons, he also made a concerted effort to improve the standard of Indian athletes by taking up several initiatives.
Among others on the special flight that brought Dr Singh and Gandhi to Mumbai, were -- political advisor to the Congress president Ahmed Patel, Mumbai Regional Congress Committee president Gurudas Kamat, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee president Prabha Rau and members of Parliament Murli Deora, Rajiv Shukla and Rahul Gandhi .
Also see: You will be missed Mr Dutt