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AGP leader passes away

Guwahati, Nov. 20: Former Assam minister and sitting AGP legislator from Algapur constituency in Hailakandi district Sahidul Alam Choudhury died at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital in New Delhi early this morning.

He was 64 and leaves behind his wife and a daughter.

Choudhury was suffering from kidney ailment for more than a year and had also undergone kidney transplant recently. He was admitted to a private hospital here last week after he developed some complications.

Choudhury’s condition deteriorated very fast yesterday forcing the family members to airlift him to Indraprastha Apollo Hospital. He was declared dead early this morning.

A five-time MLA, Choudhury was elected to the Assembly for the first time in 1985 as an Independent candidate.

Later, he joined the AGP and became a minister of state in the department of municipal administration in the first AGP government. In 1996, he became the minister for panchayat and rural development when the AGP again came to power.

Known as a close aide of former chief minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta, Choudhury had stood by him through thick and thin.

Choudhury was the lone AGP legislator from Barak valley in the present Assembly. He was also the general secretary of the AGP central committee.

Chief minister Tarun Gogoi condoled the death of Choudhury and said his contributions as the representative of the people for development of the state would be remembered forever.

Choudhury’s death has cast a pall of gloom in Hailakandi district and leaders cutting across political lines condoled his demise.

Family sources said tomorrow morning Choudhury’s body would be brought to Algapur where his last rites would be performed.

Senior AGP leaders, including Mahanta and working president Atul Bora, visited Choudhury’s residence near Rajdhani Masjid in Dispur.

His body was later taken to the AGP headquarters at Ambari and the Assembly where floral tributes were paid to him.

“I along with Phani Bhusan Choudhury and Nurul Hussain will attend his janaza (last rites) tomorrow,” Bora said.