Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed died today at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi. He was 79 and on ventilator for the past few days. Following his demise the PDP has decided to appoint his daughter Mehbooba Mufti as the new Chief Minister. She will be the first woman in Jammu & Kashmir to hold the post.
Mr. Sayeed was the CM of the state during 2002 to 2005 in coalition with the Congress party and led the PDP-BJP coalition till his death and thus helped the latter to come in power for the first time in the Muslim majority state. A congress person till 1987, he left the party and joined the VP Singh government of National Front in 1989 and became the only Muslim Home Minister of India.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered his condolences at the technical area of the Palam airport before the body was flown to Srinagar. “Mufti Sahab provided a healing touch to J&K through his leadership. What stood out about Mufti Sahab was his statesmanship. In his long political journey he won many admirers across the political spectrum,” he said. Home Minister Rajnath Singh was deputed by the PM to represent the Centre at the funeral.
Mr. Sayeed was given a state funeral with all the honours and the body was taken from his official residence at Srinagar to the ancestral graveyard in Anantnag.