Former Indian Finance Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Arun Jaitley passed away on Saturday aged 66. He is survived by his wife and two children.
Jaitley, whose ill health had prevented him from serving in the Modi 2.0 Cabinet, was unwell for a large part of the last two years. In 2018, Arun Jaitley underwent a kidney transplant surgery, following which he was put under isolation.
During the Narendra Modi government's first term in office, Jaitley was seen as the prime minister's 'go-to' man and was often chosen to take on the responsibilities of temporarily handling ministries other than his primary portfolio of finance.
After the BJP's victory in the 2019 Lok Sabha election, he wrote to PM Modi requesting that he not be given any responsibilities in the new government as he wanted to focus on his health.
A lawyer by profession, Jaitley was among the leaders who were jailed by the Indira Gandhi government during the Emergency. After being released from jail, he joined active politics as a member of the Jan Sangh and rose through the ranks of the organisation, which later became the BJP.