A day after celebrating his 93rd birthday, veteran Congress leader and former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Motilal Vora passed away on Monday afternoon.
According to party sources, Vora passed away at a private hospital in Delhi.
Vora, one of the tallest leaders of the Congress, held several positions. He had served as Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister and was also the Governor of Uttar Pradesh.
He was a Rajya Sabha MP from Chhattisgarh till April this year and held several positions in the party, including the post of treasurer.
Condoling the death of Vora, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi said: "Vora ji was a true Congressman and a wonderful human being. We will miss him very much. My love and condolences to his family and friends."
Vora was admitted to the Escorts Hospital in Okhla here a few days ago with a urinary infection. He also had a lung infection and was put on ventilator support, his family said.
He completed 93 years only on Sunday. He will be cremated in Chhattisgarh where his body will be taken either later in the day or on Tuesday.
Vora, a former Chief minister of undivided Madhya Pradesh and also a former Governor of Uttar Pradesh, had served as a Rajya Sabha member four times and as a Lok Sabha member once.
Several political leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former Congress president Rahul Gandhi paid their tributes to the departed leader.
PM Modi said he was saddened by the demise of the Congress veteran.
"Shri Motilal Vora Ji was among the senior-most Congress leaders, who had vast administrative and organisational experience in a political career that spanned decades. Saddened by his demise. Condolences to his family and well-wishers. Om Shanti," the PM said in a tweet.
In his condolence message, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said he was sad on hearing about Vora's demise. The minister said he had worked closely with Vora when he was UP Governor.
"He was respected across parties as a gentle and experienced politician. I express my condolences to his family in this hour of grief," Singh said in a tweet in Hindi.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said every Congress leader and worker is feeling personally pained over Vora's death.
"Vora ji was a symbol of loyalty, dedication and patience towards the ideology of Congress," she said.
She also said Vora was present at every party meeting even at an advanced age of 92 and expressed his views openly on every issue. "Today, while bidding him goodbye I feel sad that an elder member of the family has left us. We will all miss him very much." Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said, "A giant is no more. Sh Moti Lal Vora was the epitome of commitment, dedication and loyalty. He inspired an entire generation by his untiring attitude and capacity to brave every adversity. My heartfelt homage." The Congress party also tweeted through its official handle, "We offer our heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of stalwart Congress leader, former Union Cabinet Minister and former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Shri Motilal Vora. Congress has lost a guiding light. May his soul rest in peace."