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Sayeed passes away, Mehbooba next Chief Minister

PDP chief and Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, who crafted an impossible alliance with BJP helping it share power for the first time in the Muslim majority state, died here on Thursday after a brief illness.

Sayeed passes away, Mehbooba next Chief Minister
Mufti Sayeed 1936-2016

New Delhi

Sayeed (79) breathed his last at the AIIMS here on Thursday morning after being put on ventilator for the past few days. Sayeed’s daughter 56-year-old Mehbooba is expected to take over as the first woman Chief Minister of the state with PDP leaders throwing their weight behind her. The party has also sent a letter to the Governor recommending the name of Mehbooba for the CM’s post. But this will require the approval of BJP. 

The body of Sayeed was flown to Srinagar by a special Indian Air Force plane and is likely to be buried in his ancestral village of Bijbehara in South Kashmir. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Rajnath Singh paid tributes to Sayeed at the Palam technical area before the body was flown to Srinagar. 

The Centre announced that the national flag will be flown half-mast on Thursday across the country as a mark of respect to the departed leader. 

He is the second J&K Chief Minister to die in office, the first one being Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah who died on September 8, 1982. Jammu and Kashmir government has declared a seven-day mourning and holiday today. 

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