Veteran J&K Congress leader Muhammad Shafi Qureshi, who has also been a former Union Minister and Governor, passed away in New Delhi on Sunday afternoon.
Born on 24th November 1929 in Srinagar, Qureshi was a prominent politician and among founders of Congress in Jammu and Kashmir. He has two sons and two daughters.
His father, late Haji Muhammad Amin Abbasi, was the first transporter of Union Council Birote, near Kohala Bridge District Abbottabad, Pakistan before 1947. He was appointed to the Parliament twice from Anantnag (Islamabad) constituency.
Qureshi has served in various capacities in his long political career. He was a Union Deputy Minister of Commerce from January 1, 1966 to February 14, 1969; Union Deputy Minister for Steel & Heavy Engineering from February 15, 1969 to May 2, 1971; Union Deputy Minister for Railways from October 1974 to March 1977 and Minister of Tourism & Civil Aviation (31-7-79).
He was sworn in as Governor of Bihar on March 19, 1991 and remained so up to August 1993. He was again sworn in as Governor of Madhya Pradesh on 24.6.93 and served as Governor of Uttar Pradesh from May 3, 1996 to 19 July 1996.
He was Secretary of Faculty of Law at the Aligarh Muslim University in 1953 and also Chairperson of the National Commission for Minorities from 3rd September 2007 with the rank of a Cabinet Minister. J&K Governor N N Vohra expressed grief over the sad demise of Shafi Qureshi, former Union Minister and Governor.
In a message of condolence, the Governor conveyed his sympathies to the bereaved family and prayed for the peace to the departed soul. Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti condoled the demise of Qureshi. In her condolence message, she expressed sympathies with the bereaved family and prayed for the eternal peace of the departed soul. She said during his extended political career spanning over several decades, Qureshi held key positions at various constitutional, political and administrative levels in India and has "contributed a lot in various spheres."
Deputy Chief Minister, Nirmal Singh, has expressed deep condolences on the demise of Shafi Qureshi.
In a condolence message, the Deputy Chief Minister expressed sympathies with the bereaved family and prayed for eternal peace to the departed soul.
Expressing deep sorrow and grief over the sad demise of Qureshi, J&K Congress Chief G A Mir termed his death as a "great loss not only to the State but to entire India."
Recalling the services rendered by Qureshi, Mir said he was the founder Member of Congress in J&K and got elected for Lok Sabha twice from Anantnag Parliamentary Constituency.
"During his tenure, the Pathankote–Jammu rail service was started and after that he got a survey done for Jammu-Baramulla railway service too," Mir said, offering his condolences to the bereaved family and praying for eternal peace to the departed soul.
Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad expressed his grief and sorrow on the sad demise of veteran Congress leader Shafi Qureshi. "Qureshi was a torchbearer of Congress ideology and a secular Parliamentarian. I have been knowing him for a long time. His death has created a vacuum in a political arena," Azad, a former J&K Chief Minister, said in his condolence message. "Qureshi Sahab was public-friendly and an upright gentleman. I express my condolences to the bereaved family and pray for the peace to the departed soul."
MLC and Vice-President of J&K Congress Ghulam Nabi Monga expressed grief over the demise of Shafi Qureshi, terming it "a great loss not for State of J&K, but for the entire country."
"The deceased was a great personality with a great political wisdom and he always worked for development of the State and its people," Monga said. Meanwhile, J&K Congress condoled the demise of Qureshi and described him a "man of principles who never compromised on anything and remained on the path of honesty."
Congress leader Muhammad Aslam Laigaroo has condoled demise of Shafi Qureshi, also his close relative. Expressing sympathy with the bereaved family, Laigaroo prayed for eternal peace to the departed soul.