Uttarakhand Congress leader Indira Hridayesh dies.

New Delhi, Veteran Uttarakhand Congress politician and Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Dr Indira Hridayesh passed away due to cardiac arrest here at the Uttarakhand Sadan on Sunday.

The 80-year-old Haldwani MLA was in the capital to attend a party meeting on Saturday and just two days ago, she was seen vociferously protesting against the fuel hike in Haldwani.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was saddened by her demise. “Dr. Indira Hridayesh Ji was at the forefront of several community service efforts. She made a mark as an effective legislator and also had rich administrative experience. Saddened by her demise. Condolences to her family and supporters. Om Shanti,” the Prime Minister’s office said quoting Mr Modi.

The state wing of the grand-old party termed her demise as extremely painful and unfortunate for the party. “The sudden demise of Dr. Indira Hridayesh ji, a senior member of the Uttarakhand Congress family, who devoted her entire political life to the Congress party from UP to Uttarakhand for the last four decades, in Uttarakhand Sadan, Delhi is extremely painful,” the party said in a tweet.

The deceased Congress leader was first elected from the Haldwani constituency in 2012. Under former chief minister Harish Rawat-led government from 2012-2017, Dr Indira served as the state Finance Minister. She also held the portfolio of Parliamentary Affairs, Higher Education, and Planning in the Uttarakhand government.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi while expressing his condolences, said that Dr Indira worked till the end for the welfare of the public and the party. “Her social and political contributions are an inspiration for all of us,” he said.

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Tirath Singh Rawat echoed similar sentiments. He said Dr Indira always remained at the forefront to raise issues of public importance. “I express my condolences to her family and supporters during this difficult time,” Mr Rawat said.