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BJP leaders remember 'legend of Bar' Jethmalani, condole his demise

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: September 8, 2019  | 13:31 IST

(Eds: Adds more details) New Delhi, Sep 8 (PTI) BJP leaders remembered Ram Jethmalani as a "legend of Bar" and great human being whose death has caused irreparable loss to the society as they condoled his demise. Party president Amit Shah expressed his deep pain saying he was not only a distinguished lawyer but also a great human who was full of life while its working president J P Nadda hailed him as a legend of Bar. "Saddened to hear the news of passing away of eminent lawyer & former union law minister Shri Ram Jethmalani. He was a legend of bar and inspiration for many lawyers. His vast experience and knowledge will be missed. His passing away is a irreparable loss to the society," Nadda said. Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar called him an outstanding criminal lawyer and an outspoken politician as he offered his condolence. BJP ally and Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan mourned the death of the former law minister as he praised his grasp of the Constitution and law. The noted lawyer, who died on Sunday at the age of 95, was elected to both Houses of Parliament on the BJP's ticket a few times but he had a tumultuous relationship with the party as his outspoken and independent working style often put him at odds with its leadership, be it the Atal-Advani era or now under Prime Minister Narendra Modi or Shah. After serving as a minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, he contested against the then prime minister from Lucknow in 2004 but his formidable legal skills and strident anti-Congress stand combined with his ties with BJP leaders despite occasional animosity meant that he was soon back in the party which promptly sent him to the Rajya Sabha. He was expelled from the BJP again in 2013 after he began attacking its then president Nitin Gadkari. He was also an early champion of Modi, the then Gujarat chief minister, as the BJP's prime ministerial candidate. He also represented Shah in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case in which the Gujarat leader was later discharged. However, Jethmalani turned a critic of Modi soon after he led his party to victory in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls. Currently a Rajya Sabha member of Lalu Prasad-led RJD, he had also successfully defended L K Advani in the Hawala case of 90s. PTI KR CK

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