Patna, Oct 20 (PTI) Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and his deputy Sushil Kumar Modi on Saturday condoled the death of BJP MP from Begusarai Bhola Singh who breathed his last at a Delhi hospital on Friday.

The mortal remains of Singh, who died at the age of 80 at the Ram Manohar Lohia hospital where he had been admitted for some time, were brought here in the afternoon.

His body was taken to the state BJP headquarters and then to the Assembly premises where the CM and the Deputy CM joined other top leaders in paying tributes to the late leader.

Kumar recalled “Bhola babu’s contribution to the politics of Bihar” while Modi described the deceased MP as “an excellent orator with an in-depth knowledge of constitutional provisions and deep trust in parliamentary traditions”.

Others present on the occasion were Speaker Vijay Kumar Chaudhary, Union ministers Ashwini Kumar Choubey and Ram Kripal Yadav, state BJP president and MP Nityanand Rai and state ministers Rajiv Ranjan alias Lalan Singh, Nand Kishore Yadav and Mangal Pandey.

In a party release, Nityanand Rai said that the last rites of Bhola Singh will be performed in his native district of Begusarai on Sunday.

The ceremony is likely to be attended, among others, by BJP national general secretary Bhupendra Yadav and Rajya Sabha MP and RSS ideologue Rakesh Sinha.

The BJP president also said the party would be observing a two-day state-wide mourning and keeping this in view all organizational programmes scheduled for Saturday and Sunday have been postponed.

Condolence messages also came from RJD leaders like Tejashwi Yadav, Rabri Devi, Tej Pratap Yadav and Misa Bharti.

Singh, who began his career as a CPI leader in the 1970s, joined the Congress in the decade that followed and served as a minister with important portfolios.

He joined the BJP later and served as Deputy Speaker for some time while the RJD was in power, and became a minister again in 2005 from the BJP quota when Nitish Kumar-led NDA defeated Lalu Prasad’s party to herald a change of regime in the state after more than a decade.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.