"True Soldier": Rahul Gandhi's Tribute To "Friend, Guide" Oscar Fernandes

Oscar Fernandes, who was a sitting Rajya Sabha member from Karnataka, died at the age of 80 on Monday afternoon.

'True Soldier': Rahul Gandhi's Tribute To 'Friend, Guide' Oscar Fernandes

Oscar Fernandes was a close confidant of the Gandhi family

New Delhi:

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today visited the family of former Union minister Oscar Fernandes and paid tribute to the party veteran who died on Monday. He was 80.

Calling Oscar Fernandes a “friend, guide and true soldier” of the Congress party, Mr Gandhi shared pictures of the time he spent with the Fernandes family at their residence.

A lifelong Congressman, Oscar Fernandes was a close confidant of the Gandhi family. “Spent some time with the family of Shri Oscar Fernandes Ji and paid last respects to him- a friend, a guide and a true soldier of the Congress Party,” Mr Gandhi wrote on Twitter.

Oscar Fernandes, who was a sitting Rajya Sabha member from Karnataka, was admitted to a hospital in Mangaluru after suffering a fall at his house while doing his regular exercise. As he was found to have an internal injury, a surgery was carried out by doctors.

On the day the Congress stalwart died, Mr Gandhi said it was a “personal loss” for him. “He was a guide and mentor to many of us in the Congress Party. He will be missed and fondly remembered for his contributions,” he added.

Oscar Fernandes had served as Parliament Secretary to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and remained a disciplined party man throughout his five-decade-long political career. A popular figure in Karnataka, he was elected five times to the Lok Sabha from the Udupi constituency and four times to the Rajya Sabha.

From 2006 to 2009, Oscar Fernandes served as the Union Minister for Labour and Employment. He also held multiple portfolios, including NRI affairs, in the UPA-II government led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh between 2009-14. As a Congressman, he chaired the central election authority and served as the AICC general secretary in 1996.