Ex-Indian leader shot in attack dies

2013-06-11 15:05
India's former federal minister Vidya Charan Shukla, treated in hospital after the rebel attack. (AP)

India's former federal minister Vidya Charan Shukla, treated in hospital after the rebel attack. (AP)

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New Delhi - Vidya Charan Shukla, a veteran leader of India's ruling Congress Party, who was seriously injured in a Maoist attack last month, died at a hospital near New Delhi on Tuesday.

The 84-year-old politician sustained gunshot injuries after he was caught in the middle of the rebel ambush on a convoy of Congress leaders, in the central state of Chhattisgarh on 25 May.

He was airlifted to the Medanta Medicity Hospital in Gurgaon on the outskirts of New Delhi and operated for intestinal and liver injuries.

"Unfortunately, despite all efforts by a team of specialists, he succumbed to his injuries and illness and passed away this afternoon," a statement issued by the hospital said.

Shukla joined former prime minister Indira Gandhi's cabinet in 1966 and went on to become the country's foreign affairs, defence and home minister in later years.

At least 24 people including the Congress Party's Chhattisgarh chief Nand Kumar Patel and another local Congress leader Mahendra Karma, were killed in the attack, the biggest by Maoists in three years.

More than a third of the country's 626 administrative districts are affected by the left-wing insurgency, which Indian leaders have described as the main internal security threat facing the country.

Read more on:    india

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