Former Member of Parliament and CPI leader D.Pandian (88) died here on Friday owing to prolonged illness.

Suffering from chronic kidney problems, Pandian was admitted to Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital on Wednesday as his health condition turned worse.

Pandian’s condition turned critical on Thursday night and was put on a ventilator but he passed away on Friday morning, a hospital official said.

A trade unionist Pandian headed the party’s state unit thrice and was elected to the Lok Sabha in 1989 and 1991 elections.

Pandian began his career as an English lecturer in the Alagappa College in Karaikudi and later became a member of the CPI.

Later Pandian joined the United Communist Party of India and was elected to the Lok Sabha from the North Chennai seat. Subsequently, he rejoined CPI in 2000 and was the party’s state secretary for three terms till 2015.

Pandian was injured in a bomb blast in 1991 in which former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and several others were killed by a female ‘human bomb’ belonging to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Sriperumbudur near here.

Pandian was supposed to translate Rajiv Gandhi’s speech at the public rally in Sriperumbudur.

Governor of Telangana Tamilisai Soundararajan, DMK President M.K. Stalin, CPI Tamil Nadu Secretary R. Mutharasan, K. Balakrishnan, Tamil Nadu Secretary, CPI(M), Tamil Nadu Congress President K.S. Alagiri, PMK Founder S. Ramadoss, BJP Tamil Nadu Chief L. Murugan, AIADMK Deputy Coordinator K.P. Munusmy, MDMK General Secretary Vaiko and others condoled Pandian’s death.

–IANS

vj/dpb