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Vasanth Salian, former Minister, passes away

11:27 AM, Sunday, July 26th, 2015
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Vasantha SalianUdupi :  Popular political leader, former minister and five-time MLA Vasanth V Salian(72) passed away in a hospital here on Saturday July 25.

 It is said, Salian complained of uneasiness and chest pain on Saturday evening, after which he was immediately rushed to High-Tech hospital at Ambalbady. He however succumbed to his pain.

He is survived by his wife and two daughters.

Mr. Salian began his political career in the Congress. A leader of the prominent Billava community in Udupi district, Mr. Salian represented the Kaup Assembly constituency five times in a row between 1983 and 2004 from the Congress. He was Minister for Ports and Fisheries in the Cabinets of M. Veerappa Moily (1993–94) and S.M. Krishna (2002–04).

He lost the 2004 and 2008 Assembly elections from Kaup. Though he lobbied hard for Congress ticket in the 2013 Assembly elections, it was given to Vinay Kumar Sorake in the last minute. Upset at this, Mr. Salian joined the Janata Dal (Secular) and contested the election from Kaup. He, however, was defeated by Mr. Sorake, who then became Urban Development Minister.

After 10 months, Mr. Salian quit JD(S) and joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2014.

Gangadhar Suvarna, Mr. Salian’s son-in-law and Congress leader, told The Hindu that the body would be kept in the former Minister’s house at Katapady for people to pay their last respects from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday. The cremation would be held in the garden of his house at 3 p.m., he said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Sorake; Oscar Fernandes, Shobha Karandlaje and B.S. Yeddyurappa, MPs; Pramod Madhwaraj, MLA, and Kota Srinivas Poojary, MLC, mourned Mr. Salian’s death.

In his condolence message, BJP State president Pralhad Joshi said Mr. Salian was a popular leader from the Billava community. In his death, the party and society had lost an able leader, he said.

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