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Veteran freedom fighter, ex-MP Shanti Patel dead

Eminent freedom-fighter, veteran trade unionist and former parliamentarian Shanti Patel died early Friday following age related problems, family sources said. He was 93.

He is survived by his son Yatin and daughters Mrinal and Minal.

Patel was associated with the shipping industry for over six decades and was a trustee of Mumbai Port Trust for 62 years till he resigned two months ago, his son Yatin said.

He also served as the president of National Union of Seafarers of India (NUSI) for over 40 years till his death Friday, NUSI general secretary AY Serang said.

“During his stewardship of NUSI, Patel championed the cause of workers and sailors movement nationally and internationally, especially the seafarers,” Serang said.

“He took NUSI to great heights in terms of safeguarding the seafarers interest and played a positive role in the development of the Indian shipping fraternity,” Serang said in his tribute.

He served as Mumbai mayor 1970-71. In 1980, he was a RajyaSabha member for one term from the Janata Dal.

A staunch Congressman in the early days, he was jailed during the latter part of the Emergency and later joined the Janata Party and then Janata Dal.

Patel’s cremation will be held at Shivaji Park around 5.30 pm Friday, Yatin said.

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