Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi`s scheduled meeting with secretaries of various ministries Tuesday was deferred following the death of union Rural Development Minister Gopinath Munde, official sources said.
Munde died in an early morning road accident in central Delhi while going to the airport today.
Later in the evening, the body of Gopinath Munde was brought to Mumbai by a special aircraft. His last rites will be held in his native village of Parali-Vaijnath in Maharashtra tomorrow.
Thousands of mourners, including senior Bharatiya Janata Party leaders, activists and common people received the casket containing the body at the Mumbai airport where security forces accorded a guard of honour.
It was taken in a motorcade to the Munde family residence at the Purna building in Worli for relatives, friends and close acquaintances to pay their last respects to the departed leader.
Senior leaders like Vinod Tawde, Kirit Somaiya, Ramdas Athawale, Raj Purohit, Munde`s daughter Pankaja Munde-Palve and others accompanied the body.
Ironically, it was the same building where Munde`s brother-in-law and former BJP strongman Pramod Mahajan was gunned down by his brother Pravin eight years ago.
Munde was born Dec 12, 1949 in Parali-Vaijnath where he received his early education.
Soon afterwards, he plunged into student politics along with brother-in-law Pramod Mahajan and was imprisoned during the Emergency.
Over the years, Munde was elected five times as legislator in Maharashtra, then leader of opposition in the Maharashtra assembly, followed by deputy chief minister, subsequently deputy leader of opposition in Lok Sabha and lastly as union minister for rural development.
He was widely tipped to be named the BJP chief ministerial candidate for the ensuing Maharashtra assembly elections in October.
With agency inputs