Former Maharashtra minister and senior Congress leader Eknath Gaikwad died of COVID-19 infection here on Wednesday, party sources said. He was 81.
The former MP, who was the father of Maharashtra School Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad, succumbed to the viral infection at a city hospital around 10 am, the sources added. Eknath Gaikwad had also served as the president of the Mumbai Congress.
Describing Gaikwad as a “father-like figure and mentor", Maharashtra Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant said the death was “quite saddening". “Congress party and I have suffered immense loss. Short of words. Tributes!" Sawant tweeted.
.@INCMumbai चे माजी अध्यक्ष पितृतुल्य, मार्गदर्शक व अत्यंत जवळीकीचे, काँग्रेसचे ज्येष्ठ नेते, काँग्रेस विचारांचे पाईक माजी खासदार एकनाथ गायकवाड यांचे निधन अत्यंत दुःखदायक आहे. काँग्रेस पक्षाची व माझी अपरिमित हानी झाली आहे. शब्द कमी पडत आहेत. भावपूर्ण श्रद्धांजली! pic.twitter.com/ewhbV68Ulm— Sachin Sawant सचिन सावंत (@sachin_inc) April 28, 2021
Condolences pour in on social media after the news of Gaikwad’s death.
Saddened to know about the demise of former MP Shri Eknath Gaikwad. Shri Gaikwad constantly endeavoured for the development of Mumbai, and particularly that of Dharavi. A soft-spoken person, he lived amidst of people and strived for welfare of the underprivileged till his last.— Governor of Maharashtra (@maha_governor) April 28, 2021
We are extremely saddened by the demise of former MP & stalwart Congress leader Shri Eknath Gaikwad ji.His contributions to the development of Maharashtra & the nation and his dedication to the Congress party will inspire many.
Our heartfelt condolences to his bereaved family. pic.twitter.com/pI1ayhBjRu
— Congress (@INCIndia) April 28, 2021
Pained by the demise of former President of Mumbai Congress committee & former MP Eknath Gaikwad Ji. My deepest condolences to the Gaikwad family in this moment of grief. He will always be remembered for his ability to carry everyone together. May his soul rest in peace.— ANIL DESHMUKH (@AnilDeshmukhNCP) April 28, 2021
Saddened to hear about the demise of senior @INCIndia leader shri. Eknath Gaikwad ji..gentle n nice person. My prayers for his soul 🙏 Deepest condolences to smt. @VarshaEGaikwad n the family 🙏🙏— Urmila Matondkar (@UrmilaMatondkar) April 28, 2021
My heartfelt condolences at the passing away of senior Congress leader & former MP from Maharashtra Shri Eknath Gaikwad ji. He worked tirelessly for the welfare of people. May God give strength to his family members & supporters. May his soul rest in peace.— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) April 28, 2021
Eknath Gaikwad ji worked alongside Murlibhai for over 3 decades. We entered Lok Sabha together in 2004 & worked unitedly to represent Mumbai.Eknath ji’s passing is a big loss for @INCMumbai. My deepest condolences to @VarshaEGaikwad, his family & supporters.
Om Shanti 🙏🏼 pic.twitter.com/CwtKtT1hPA
— Milind Deora | मिलिंद देवरा ☮️ (@milinddeora) April 28, 2021