Maharashtra assembly paid tributes to BJP leader and Union Minister Gopinath Munde, who died in a road accident on Tuesday, describing him as a mass leader full of life.
The House adopted a ‘Motion of Gratitude’ moved by Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, who described Mr. Munde as a man full of enthusiasm whose life was cut short at its peak.
The Motion of Gratitude was moved and adopted since a Condolence Motion had already been passed the day Mr. Munde died.
Mr. Chavan said Mr. Munde was the rural face of the BJP, seen as
an urban party.
“Munde never took elections lightly and was always busy planning and strategising his next moves. He was extremely enthusiastic about the coming assembly elections. What were his wishes and whether they would have been accepted will never be known now,” Mr. Chavan said apparently hinting at the late leader’s Chief Ministerial ambition.
“In our last conversation over telephone, he was very enthusiastic about his rural development portfolio and told me the details of the ministry’s budget and how he wanted to use his position for the development of rural Maharashtra,” Mr. Chavan recalled.
Mr. Chavan said Mr. Munde could make friends beyond politics
and stick to that friendship.
Leader of Opposition Eknath Khadse, in an emotional speech, said Mr. Munde had met state BJP leaders on June 1 to discuss the upcoming assembly elections.
“As he was delegating responsibilities, I told him that we would meet again after a fortnight when the ongoing Monsoon Session ends. He said who has so much time,” Mr. Khadse recalled.
He said Mr. Munde’s leadership blossomed after the BJP entered into an alliance with the Shiv Sena.
“He persuaded the BJP leadership to tie up with the Shiv Sena after the Bal Thackeray-led party captured the Aurangabad municipal corporation,” he reminisced.
“The Krishna valley development corporation was his idea to ensure welfare of farmers,” he said and described Mr. Munde as a affectionate person who never felt threatened by the rise of juniors.