R.L. Jalappa, former Union Minister and veteran Congress leader from Karnataka, passes away

Published : December 18, 2021 09:03 IST

Former Union Minister R.L. Jalappa, a file photograph. Photo: The Hindu Archives

R.L. Jalappa, former Union Minister and veteran Indian National Congress leader, passed away in Kolar at the age of 98 on the evening of December 17. He had been suffering from respiratory- and kidney-related ailments and was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of the R.L. Jalappa Hospital and Research Centre in Kolar where he breathed his last. In a significant political career, Jalappa was mainly associated with the Congress, apart from long stints with the Janata Party and the Janata Dal. He was Union Minister of Textiles between 1996 and 1998 when the United Front coalition government was in power at the Centre and was elected continuously to the Lok Sabha for four consecutive terms from Chikkaballapur, representing the constituency between 1996 and 2009.

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah, former Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and other politicians in Karnataka condoled his death. Bommai stated: “I am saddened to hear the news of the death of former Union Minister and senior politician R.L. Jalappa. He was a senior leader in the State’s politics and served society by setting up several educational institutions.”

Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah took to Twitter and described Jalappa as his “guide”. “I am shocked at the death of senior Congress leader R.L. Jalappa. I have lost someone who was like a member of my family, my well-wisher and my guide,” Siddaramaiah said. In a statement, D.K. Shivakumar, president, Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee, said he was “personally distraught” at Jalappa’s death who, he said, “worked for the backward classes and fought for social justice”.

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