NEW DELHI: Parliament today condoled the death of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa saying the country has lost a courageous and charismatic leader, before adjourning the proceedings for the day as a mark of respect for the departed soul.
After paying tributes to Jayalalithaa, who was also a Rajya Sabha member from 1984-89, members in both Houses stood in silence for a brief while.
68-year-old passed away late last night in Chennai after being hospitalised for 75 days.
Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari said that in the passing away of Jayalalithaa, the country has lost a prominent leader, distinguished Parlimentarian and an able administrator.
Describing Jayalalithaa as a “charismatic personality”, Mr Ansari said her contribution to economic development and deprived sections of the society would long be cherished. She also contributed immensely to Tamil, Telugu and Kannada film industries, he added.
“We deeply mourn her passing away,” Mr Ansari said before adjourning the proceedings for the day.
Expressing grief at the passing away of Jayalalithaa, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the country has lost a highly popular, courageous and eminent public persona.
“Selvi Jayalalithaa was a true leader of the masses and her followers fondly called her ‘Amma’, meaning mother, and ‘Puratchi Thalaivi’ meaning a revolutionary leader,” Ms Mahajan said.
A multi-faceted personality, she was the first woman Opposition leader in the Tamil Nadu Assembly and served as Chief Minister of the state for six terms.
Jayalalithaa was an accomplished classical dancer and has acted in over 140 Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Hindi films.
In Lok Sabha, newly elected BJP member Gyan Singh, representing Shahdol constituency in Madhya Pradesh, took oath before the proceedings were adjourned for the day.