Veteran Congress leader Vidya Charan Shukla dies of bullet wounds

V C ShuklaVC Shukla had sustained bullet wounds in a Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh on May 25. (IE photo)

Congress veteran Vidya Charan Shukla, who sustained bullet wounds in a Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh, died today at the Medanta Hospital in Gurgaon after suffering from multi-organ failure. He was 84.

V C Shukla, a former union minister, is survived by wife and three daughters.

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Shukla was undergoing treatment here since May 26.

"He developed multi-organ failure. Severe bullet injury and old age were major risk factors in his case," said Yatin Mehta, Chairman of Institute of Critical Care and Anaesthesiology in the Medanta Medicity Hospital.

Shukla had shown marginal improvement a week ago but his condition deteriorated on Monday following an infection.

Prior to his shift to Gurgaon, Shukla had undergone an operation at a Jagdalpur hospital for removal of the bullets.

The Congress leader was airlifted to Medanta Hospital in Gurgaon from Raipur May 26, a day after the attack which eliminated almost the entire top leadership of Chhattisgarh unit of Congress.

Maoists had ambushed a convoy of Congress leaders in Chhattisgarh's Bastar district on Saturday, killing 27 people including PCC chief Nand Kumar Patel, his son Dinesh, senior Congress leader Mahendra Karma and ex-MLA Uday Mudaliyar and injuring Shukla and 36 others.

Shukla, son of illustrious lawyer, freedom fighter and veteran Congressman Ravishankar Shukla, was the first Chief Minister of the re-organized Madhya Pradesh.

Elected to Lok Sabha nine times, the first time in 1957, he was Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting under the late Mrs Indira Gandhi and had a controversial tenure in the ministry during the Emergency.

He had sided with VP Singh in the late 80s and joined the Jan Morcha in the run up to the Parliament elections in 1989.

Shukla became a minister in VP Singh government and later switched to Chandrashekhar to remain a minister in the shortlived JD (S) government.

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