Ahmed Patel was one of the closest aides of party president Sonia Gandhi and had often steered the party out of difficult situations.

A file photo of Ahmed Patel with folded arms at an eventFile photo: PTI
news Wednesday, November 25, 2020 - 08:24

Senior Congress leader and the party's top strategist Ahmed Patel died in New Delhi early on Wednesday morning. Patel (71) was critical for a few days and was admitted to the Medanta Hospital in Gurugram. He had contracted COVID-19 and later developed complications. "With profound grief and sorrow, I regret to announce and sad and untimely demise of my father, Ahmed Patel at November 25 at 3.30 am. After testing positive for the coronavirus around a month ago, his health worsened further due to multiple organ failures...I request all well wishers to adhere to COVID-19 law and order regulations by avoiding any mass gatherings and to also maintain physical distancing norms at all times," his children, Faisal Patel and Mumtaz Patel said in a statement.

This comes after Ahmed Patel showed some sign of recovery with his daughter stating last week, that his condition was improving. "He is significantly better and he is stable but the treatment is going to take a long time. We do hope he recovers well enough to talk you all personally. Please keep praying for him and thanks for your wishes and thoughts," Mumtaz had said.

He was one of the closest aides of party president Sonia Gandhi and was her political adviser. He had often steered the party out of difficult situations.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress leaders, including Rahul Gandhi, have condoled his demise.

"Saddened by the demise of Ahmed Patel. 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’s soul rest in peace," the Prime Minister tweeted.

Taking to Twitter, Rahul Gandhi said, "It is a sad day. 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 and the family."

Many others also offered their condolences.

With IANS and PTI inputs