Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran leader and India’s former Finance Minister – Arun Jaitely passed away at AIIMS on Saturday after a prolonged illness. Jaitley had undergone dialysis on Thursday. Rated as a brilliant strategist and one of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s most trusted colleagues, Jaitley was far more than an accomplished lawyer and many notches above his contemporaries in politics.
Hurt and pained after the news, several Team India cricketers from Virender Sehwag to Gautam Gambhir took to Twitter to express his disappointment. Apart from the duo, many others soon followed suit. “It is with profound grief that we inform about the sad demise of Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Member of Parliament (MP) at 12:07 p.m. on Saturday. Jaitley was admitted in AIIMS, New Delhi on August 9 and was treated by a multi-disciplinary team of senior doctors,” said Aarti Vij, Chairperson, Media and Protocol, AIIMS.
“Pained at the passing away of #ArunJaitley ji. Apart from having served greatly in public life , he played a huge role in many players from Delhi getting an opportunity to represent India. There was a time when not many players from Delhi got a chance at the highest level,” tweeted Sehwag.
“But under his leadership at the DDCA, many players including me got a chance to represent India. He listened to needs of the players & was a problem solver. Personally shared a very beautiful relationship with him. My thoughts & prayers are with his family & loved ones. Om Shanti,” he added.
Gambhir, a member of parliament himself, also expressed his grief at the bereavement of Jaitley.
“A father teaches u to speak but a father figure teaches u to talk. A father teaches u to walk but a father figure teaches u to march on. A father gives u a name but a father figure gives u an identity. A part of me is gone with my Father Figure Shri Arun Jaitley Ji. RIP Sir,” Gambhir wrote on his official Twitter handle.
Jaitley’s influence was far beyond the political domain. He dominated the legal circles even after becoming politician and was a key cricket administrator who had complete control over Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA). He was one of the key influencers in Delhi’s bar, playing an intricate role its politics. He commanded same influence in complex cricketing affairs of the country.