Rajya Sabha member Amar Singh, who once wielded immense influence in political and Bollywood circles as a close aide of Samajwadi Party (SP) supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav and Amitabh Bachchan, died at a Singapore hospital on Saturday.
The 64-year-old leader was hospitalised in Singapore in March for surgery in a kidney-related illness and had lately been admitted to its intensive care unit. He is survived by wife Pankaja and twin daughters.
Singh’s mortal remains are being handed over to his family, and will most likely be brought to Delhi.
Singh’s Twitter profile indicates he was very active on social media despite his illness. He had last tweeted around three-hours ago before his death, in which he had paid tribute to the revolutionary freedom fighter Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak.
Earlier on March 22, Singh had posted a short video message on Twitter from the hospital bed in which he appealed to followers to support Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the fight against coronavirus.
Singh had undergone a second kidney transplant. The transplant was successful and he was recovering. However, there was a wound in the wall of his abdomen which wasn’t healing and became infectious. The infection made it difficult for him to survive. The doctors tried to revive him but failed.
In February 2013, Singh had fainted at Dubai airport while on his way to Singapore for a regular medical check-up. Earlier in March 2020 when rumors surfaced about Amar Singh’s death, the former Samajwadi Party leader had said, “Tiger Zinda Hai.”
Tributes and condolences poured in as soon as the news of Amar Singh’s demise broke out. Prime Minister Narendra Modi described Singh as an “energetic public figure” who was “known for his friendships”.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh described Singh, his fellow politician from Uttar Pradesh, as a leader with friends in every political party.
In his 14-year-long first stint with the SP from 1996 to 2010, Singh built an extensive network for the party and was frequently seen with celebrities, from Anil Ambani to the Bachchans, to Subrata Roy.