Veteran Congress leader Oscar Fernandes laid to rest in Bengaluru
Bengaluru: Former Union Minister and five-time Congress MP from Karnataka Oscar Fernandes was laid to rest in Bengaluru on Thursday.
Fernandes (80) passed away at a hospital in Mangaluru on Monday. The former Union Minister had undergone surgery to remove a clot in his brain. He was admitted to the hospital in Bengaluru after he suffered a head injury due to a fall when practicing Yoga at his home in July this year.
Rahul Gandhi, accompanied by KPCC President DK Shivakumar, met with Fernandes' wife, son and family members before heading to an emotional service at St. Patrick's Church. Former chief minister Siddaramaiah, Opposition leader in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge and AICC General Secretary KC Venugopal and former governor Margaret Alva and others were present.
Senior central and state Congress leaders and workers paid last respects to the departed leader at the church in Bengaluru. KPCC has made arrangements for the last journey of the tallest Congress leader from the state.
In a political career spanning over four decades, Oscar Fernandes was five-time Lok Sabha MP, four-time Rajya Sabha MP and in Karnataka, served as the KPCC president for two terms. Also, he served as Parliamentary Secretary to Rahul Gandhi's father late Rajiv Gandhi.
Fernandes was the Union Cabinet Minister for Transport, Road and Highways and Labour and Employment in UPA government. He is one of the closest confidants of the present Congress President Rahul Gandhi and one of the major leaders in the taking of important decisions of the Congress Party.
He was a Union Minister from 2004 to 2009, holding a number of portfolios such as Statistics and Programme Implementation, NRI Affairs, Youth and Sports Affairs and Labour and Employment. Also, served two terms as a member of the Council of the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.