"And then there are people for whom politics is about others and others' welfare. I think the late E Ahamed Sahib belonged to the category of politicians for whom politics was all about others' good," Mr Gandhi said at an event held in remembrance of former Union Minister E Ahamed, who died a year ago after a heart attack in the Lok Sabha.
United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi was expected to attend the meeting but could not and sent a message instead that was read out by the organisers.
Rahul Gandhi recalled how he struck up a friendship with Mr Ahamed, an Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) leader from Kerala who used to sit behind him in the Lok Sabha, despite their huge age difference.
Mr Ahamed, who collapsed inside the Lok Sabha during the President's address to the joint sitting of both houses ahead of the Budget session last year, was rushed to Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital in Delhi. The next day, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was scheduled to present the Budget.
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah also spoke at the event. The meeting was attended by a number of parliamentarians, especially those from Kerala, and others including Congress leaders AK Anthony, Shashi Tharoor and K Rehman Khan, CPM's Mohammed Saleem, CPI leader D Raja, Revolutionary Socialist Party parliamentarian NK Premachandran and former Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran.
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