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Ananth Kumar remembered at condolence meet in Delhi

Ananth Kumar remembered at condolence meet in Delhi

New Delhi, Dec 20(PTI) BJP leader Ananth Kumar who passed away last month was fondly remembered on Thursday, with Vice President Venkaiah Naidu recalling him as his younger brother at a condolence meeting on Thursday at the Constitution Club here. The condolence meeting was attended by most of the Union ministers and top BJP leaders including party president Amit Shah. Naidu said it is difficult to imagine and reconcile the sad demise of dynamic Kumar. "He was like my younger brother and always took my guidance. He was an ideal grassroots worker, ideal politician, ideal parliamentarian and an ideal friend," Naidu said. Kumar died at a private hospital in Bengaluru after battling lung cancer for several months, in the early hours of November 12. Former deputy prime minister and veteran BJP leader Lal Krishna Advani in an emotional remembrance said, "I get opportunity to participate in the condolence meetings but I could not think that I will have to participate in the condolence meeting of Ananth ji. I was very much grieved to listen about his death." During a condolence meeting for Atal Bihari Vajpayee in August, Advani, who along with the former prime minister was a central figure in the BJP for much of its existence, described the party stalwart as one of the country's tallest statesmen and his closest friend for over 65 years whom he will miss immensely. Union External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj remembered Kumar as calling her as mother "Whenever he would be very much sad and disappointed, he used to call me on phone and also meet me. I pay my homage to such obedient child," she said. BJP chief Amit Shah said Kumar was not so old that one could think of his passing away, and termed him as a leader who laid the foundation of the party in Karnataka. Delhi BJP president Manoj Tiwari and leaders of other parties too paid rich homage to the late leader on the occasion. PTI VIT CK