Arun Jaitley passed away on Saturday at the age of 66. The former Finance Minister was admitted to AIIMS in New Delhi on August 9. On the day the veteran BJP leader was admitted to AIIMS, the hospital had issued a statement saying that he was being given treatment in the ICU under a multidisciplinary team of doctors and that at that point he was hemodynamically stable. Arun Jaitley's unfortunate demise marks the end of an extraordinary career that has witnessed him holding incredibly important positions at various levels, both in the government and outside.
After Arun Jaitley's sad demise, the cricketing fraternity came forward and offered their last respects to the BJP stalwart. Among them was Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar.
The Master Blaster took to social media and paid condolences to Arun Jaitley's family and friends. Tendulkar then wrote that he was saddened to hear about the demise of Shri Arun Jaitley and described Jaitley as a personality who had donned several hats successfully, including that of a cricket administrator. Sachin Tendulkar then went on to mention that India has lost a distinguished parliamentarian.
Read Sachin Tendulkar's tweet here:
Saddened to hear about the demise of Shri Arun Jaitley. He donned several hats successfully, including that of a cricket administrator. India has lost a distinguished parliamentarian. My condolences to his family and friends.— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) August 24, 2019
Born in Delhi on December 28, 1952, Arun Jaitley studied at the St Xavier's school and went on to graduate with a degree in commerce from the Shri Ram College of Commerce in 1973, and went on to pursue an LLB at the Faculty of Law, University of Delhi. At that time, he is also said to have considered becoming a Chartered Accountant.
Active in politics since his time as a student, Jaitley was a member of the ABVP, and served as the President of the Delhi University Students Union in 1974. Like a number of his contemporaries in the BJP, Jaitley was put under preventive custody for fighting the Emergency as part of the JP movement, the clampdown on him lasting 19 months.
He rose to become the president of the Delhi ABVP and its All India Secretary, He became the president of the youth wing of the Jan Sangh which he had joined later.
Parallel to his political commitments, Jaitley also practiced law, before the Supreme Court and numerous High Courts. He was appointed ASG in the VP Singh government in 1989 and has also appeared in several corporate matters. He stopped practicing law only in June 2009 on becoming the leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha. In the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA government, he had served as the Minister for Law and Justice.
He is best known for having served as the Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs in the first Narendra Modi government, has also held portfolios of Defence and Information and Broadcasting. It was Jaitley who rolled out the GST in 2017 which saw India becoming a unified market for goods and services for the first time, and was also the first chairman of the GST council, being widely credited for forging consensus leading to the Constitutional amendment that eventually passed the GST Bill.
Jaitley opted out of the second Narendra Modi government, having gone to the US for two spells of treatment for a medical ailment in 2018-19. He has, however, regularly taken to Facebook and Twitter to pen blogs on various significant issues in the country.