Shiv Sena patriarch Bal Thackeray dies

Shiv Sena patriarch Bal Thackeray, who was critically ill for the past few days, passed away at his residence 'Matoshree' in suburban Bandra on Saturday. He was 86. "He had suffered a cardiac arrest. We could not revive him despite our best efforts. He breathed his last at around 3:30 pm," Dr Jalil Parkar, who treated the Sena supremo, told reporters after emerging from the Thackeray residence this evening.

Thackeray had been suffering from respiratory problems and pancreatic disease. He is survived by sons Jaidev and Uddhav, who is the executive president of the party.

Meanwhile, security has been stepped up in the metropolis in the wake of Thackeray's death. Thackeray's condition worsened on Wednesday night when he had to be put on life support. He was taken off life support later after showing signs of improvement. The funeral will take place on Sunday.

President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh condoled the death of Thackeray. Singh cancelled a dinner for BJP leaders scheduled on Saturday evening ahead of the Parliament session following Sushma Swaraj's request.

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