NEW DELHI, July 27 - President Pranab Mukherjee and the Rajya Sabha today condoled the death of former minister Bijoy Krishna Handique.
In his condolence message to Handique�s wife Swarup Rani Handique, the President said, �I am sad to learn about the passing away of Handique, a friend and colleague of long years.
�Handique served the nation with distinction in different capacities during his public life. His services to the nation as a Union minister of state for defence, parliamentary affairs, mines, chemicals and fertilizers and minister for mines and north eastern region during the tenure of the UPA government will be always remembered.
�Handique made immense contribution for the welfare and development of the people of India, especially the State of Assam.�
In the Rajya Sabha, as soon as the House assembled for business, Chairman Hamid Ansari read out the obituary resolution, describing Handique as a social worker and said that he had founded many educational institutions and was actively involved in promoting craft skills amongst women, setting up of community halls for tea plantation workers and minority population and organising relief works in natural calamities.
�In the passing away of Handique, the country has lost a distinguished parliamentarian, an able administrator and a dedicated social worker,� the Rajya Sabha resolution said.