Former President Pranab Mukherjee breathed his last on Monday. He was 84.
His son shared the tragic news on Twitter and wrote: "With a Heavy Heart , this is to inform you that my father Shri #PranabMukherjee has just passed away inspite of the best efforts of Doctors of RR Hospital & prayers ,duas & prarthanas from people throughout India ! I thank all of You"
He had been hospitalized for the past 21 days and been critical following a brain surgery. The veteran leader was admitted to the hospital at 12.07 p.m. on August 10 in a critical condition. There was a slight improvement in Mukherjee's health condition last week, however, it deteriorated when he developed lung infection.
Mukherjee was also found to be COVID-19 positive when he was admitted on August 10 for life-saving emergency surgery. There had been no improvement in his health status since.
Hours before his demise on Monday, the Army Hospital (Research and Referral), Delhi Cantonment had said in a statement, "There is a decline in the medical condition of Hon'ble Shri Pranab Mukherjee since yesterday. He is in septic shock due to his lung infection and is being managed by team of specialists. He continues to be in deep coma and on ventilator support."
Mukherjee was the 13th president of India from 2012 to 2017. His last tweet was on July 24, 2017, ahead of his address the nation on the eve of demitting office. It read: "Thank you for your affection & support ; tomorrow when I engage with you it will not be as President but as a citizen #PresidentMukherjee"
In a series of tweets, he had written: "In last five years, my principal responsibility was to function as the guardian of the Constitution. As I had said on oath, I strived to preserve, protect and defend our Constitution, not just in word but also in spirit. In this task, I greatly benefitted from the advice and co-operation extended by Prime Minister Modi at every step. I will carry with me fond memories of my association with Prime Minister Modi and his warm & courteous behaviour. As I retire from the Office of the President of the Republic, my association with the Parliament also comes to an end. I will no longer be a part of the Parliament of India. It will be with a tinge of sadness and a rainbow of memories that I will be leaving this magnificent building today."
"I leave with a sense of fulfilment & happiness of having served the people of this country - as their humble servant."
"I am overwhelmed by a deep sense of gratitude for the people of India for the trust & confidence they reposed in me. I have received much more from the country than I have given; for that, I will remain ever indebted to people of India."