Swaraj condolences

Bansuri Swaraj, daughter of BJP leader Sushma Swaraj, at the last rites of her mother at the Dayanand crematorium in New Delhi on Aug. 7, 2019. (IANS photo)

A number of Indian American organizations have publicly stated their heartfelt condolences over the passing of former Bharatiya Janata Party politician Sushma Swaraj.

Swaraj, the former external affairs minister, died at the AIIMS in India Aug. 6 night following cardiac arrest, hospital sources said. She was 67 (see previous India-West article here: https://bit.ly/2YP1pA2).

The Overseas Friends of BJP-USA in a statement said it was “shocked and deeply saddened to learn about the sudden demise of Smt Sushma Swaraj.”

“It is indeed a huge loss to the nation as 1.3 billion people remember her yeomen service to the country. Her unmatched oratory skills and her human touch always mesmerized the people across all walks of life,” the organization said.

The 67-year-old leader, who had served her fourth term in the Lok Sabha had long been her party’s most prominent woman face. She was the youngest cabinet minister at 25 when she joined the Haryana government in 1977 and the first woman chief minister of Delhi.

“While she was an opposition leader, she won the accolades from both friends and foes. She had friends across the aisle and from all ideologies which speak volumes about her human interactions and outreach,” the OFBJP-USA added.

“She was a remarkable leader who devoted her life to the public service and was instrumental in affecting process changes in the Indian consulates across the globe aimed to help NRIs and India diaspora. She was just Twitter away in helping the distressed people,” the organization said. “Her quick wit and forever helping hand made her extremely popular in the community of Indian Diaspora.”

Added the Global Organization of People Indian Origin: GOPIO “conveys its heartfelt condolences in passing away of Smt. Sushma Swaraj … As minister looking after the Overseas Indian Affairs, GOPIO have had a close working relation and cooperation on many of the NRI and PIO issues as well as on new initiatives from her ministry. We have been working with Sushmaji since she has been the leader of BJP in the Rajya Sabha. In her passing away, we will miss a Statesman as well as a sincere and able political leader. GOPIO International conveys its heartfelt condolences. May her soul rest in peace.

The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin relayed their condolences for Swaraj as well, saying the public officer “brought her innate grace and charm into her work. She made her mark in her own way – connecting with the diaspora far and wide, and reaching out to

help them.”

“She would respond to every appeal for assistance, and make sure the Indian missions responded to the requests. In this way she gave the human touch to the Ministry of External Affairs, and won millions of admirers across the world,” AAPI added.

Swaraj served as the Minister of External Affairs of India from May 26, 2014 to May 30, 2019. She was elected seven times as a member of parliament and three times as a member of the legislative assembly.

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