Guwahati, November 23
Veteran Congress leader and three-time Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi (86) passed away on Monday evening after a protracted illness, Assam Health and Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.
The former Union Minister and sitting member of Assam assembly is survived by his wife Dolly Gogoi, son Gaurav Gogoi, a Lok Sabha member, and daughter Chandrima Gogoi who lives in the US.
Announcing Gogoi’s death, Sarma told the media that the former Chief Minister’s body would be kept at the famous Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra in Guwahati on Monday night. The cremation will take place on Tuesday or Wednesday with full state honours after consultation with his family.
The longest serving Assam Chief Minister, Gogoi’s health condition deteriorated since Friday due to post-Covid-19 complications. He also suffered a multi-organ failure.
Following post-Covid-19 complications, the veteran politician, who was on non-invasive ventilation (NIV) since he was admitted to the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) on November 2, was put under invasive ventilation.
Doctors at the GMCH said that Gogoi’s health condition deteriorated gradually with problems in breathing following which the doctors put him on intubation ventilator, which is a machine driven ventilation.
“The doctors have tried hard to revive his organs with medicines and other medical methods besides serving dialysis numerous times, but all the efforts have failed,” the Health Minister said.
He said the doctors at GMCH were in constant touch with experts from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi. Due to his critical condition, Gogoi could not be shifted outside the state for medical treatment.
Gogoi was discharged from the hospital on October 25 after he recovered from Covid-19 and other post-recovery complications after more than 60 days.
He was administered plasma therapy and subsequently became stable.
The octogenarian Congress leader was under the observation of the nine-member medical team headed by GMCH Superintendent Abhijit Sarmah.
Gogoi had tested positive for Covid-19 on August 25 and was admitted to the GMCH the next day.
Gogoi represented the Titabar Assembly constituency in Jorhat district.
‘End of an era’
President Ram Nath Kovind condoled the demise of former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and said his passing away marks the end of an era.
His long tenure in office was a period of epochal change in the state, the president said.
Gogoi died in Guwahati on Monday while undergoing treatment for post-COVID-19 complications. He was 84.
“Extremely sad to know of the demise of Shri Tarun Gogoi, former Chief Minister of Assam. The country has lost a veteran leader with rich political and administrative experience. His long tenure in office was a period of epochal change in Assam,” Kovind tweeted.
He will always be remembered for the development of Assam and especially towards his efforts to improve law and order and fighting insurgency in the state, he said in another tweet.
“His passing away marks the end of an era. In this hour of grief, condolences to his family, friends and supporters,” the president said.
Prime Minister Narendra called Gogoi “a popular leader”.
“Shri Tarun Gogoi Ji was a popular leader and a veteran administrator, who had years of political experience in Assam as well as the Centre. Anguished by his passing away.
“My thoughts are with his family and supporters in this hour of sadness. Om Shanti,” Modi said on Twitter.
Condolences also poured in from Gogoi’s own party, the Congress.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet: “Shri Tarun Gogoi was a true Congress leader. He devoted his life to bringing all the people and communities of Assam together”.
“For me, he was a great and wise teacher. I loved and respected him deeply. I will miss him. My love and condolences to Gaurav and the family,” the tweet said.