New Delhi: Veteran Bihar politician and ex-RJD leader Raghuvansh Prasad Singh died Sunday morning at AIIMS in Delhi, where he had been placed on a ventilator and was being treated for post-Covid complications. He was 74 years old.
Mr Singh tested positive for COVID-19 in June, after which he was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in the national capital.
A long-time associate of former Bihar Chief Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav, he had rattled Mr Yadav and the RJD by submitting a handwritten resignation letter.
“After (former Chief Minister and socialist icon) Karpuri Thakur’s death, I stood by you for 32 years, but no more,” he wrote in a not-so-steady hand, adding that he had received love and support from the party.
But Lalu Yadav made it clear he was not giving up on his old friend so easily, and sent back a handwritten reply of his own, writing: “…I cannot believe it… First you get better, then we will talk. You are not going anywhere. Know it.”
This morning, shortly after Mr Singh’s death was confirmed, an anguished Lalu Prasad Yadav tweeted: “Dear Raghuvansh Babu! What did you do? I told you the day before yesterday, you are not going anywhere. But you went so far. I am speechless. I am sad. Will miss you very much.”
“I have received sad news on the death of former MP Shri Raghuvansh Prasad Singh. I pay my respects at his feet. May his soul rest in peace and support his family and supporters in this difficult time. Om Shanti,” Mr Chouhan tweeted.
“I am shocked at the news of the death of Raghuvansh Babu. Very sad news. We have all been together in many struggles for decades. (His) absence will be very much lost in today’s time. Memories of his work and behaviour will inspire us. Heartfelt condolences to his family and friends,” Mr Yechury said.
Raghuvansh Prasad Singh represented the state’s Vaishali constituency and was the Union Minister for Rural Development in the Congress-led UPA-I government.
A politician of nearly four decades, Raghuvansh Prasad Singh was widely regarded as an expert in the rural and agricultural landscape of the country and is credited with the conceptualisation and implementation of the NREGA (National Rural Guarantee Employment) Act.