Environment Minister Anil Dave, a long-time RSS member best known for crafting the BJP strategy to unseat Congress stalwart Digvijay Singh as Madhya Pradesh chief minister in 2003, died here today.
60-year-old Dave complained of uneasiness at his home this morning and was rushed to AIIMS where he died, according to official sources. Dave was a bachelor.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has condoled the demise of the Environment Minister. The Prime Minister said that he was “shocked” by the sudden demise of a friend and a respected colleague.
However, the cause of Dave’s death is not known. The minister was believed to have not been keeping well for a while.
Even the questions related to his ministry were answered by his predecessor Prakash Javadekar during the Budget Session of Parliament.
Dave was appointed the Environment Minister with an independent charge after Javadekar was promoted to the Cabinet rank as the HRD Minister in the last government reshuffle.
Dave’s held a meeting with the Prime Minister last night, which was believed to have been around the contentious issue related to the GEAC nod to GM mustard. He was a member of the Rajya Sabha since 2009.
Meanwhile, former Union Minister and Senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh condoled the demise of Dave.
Describing the BJP leader as a “very nice man”, Ramesh in his condolence message remembered the support Dave had extended to him during his stint as Environment Minister in the previous Congress-led UPA government. “He supported whatever I did when I was Minister,” Ramesh said.
The Rajya Sabha MP said Dave, who was an “ideal Chairman of the Rajya Sabha select committees,” had special interest in river conservation.