Senior Biju Janata Dal leader and Rajya Sabha MP from Odisha Kalpataru Das passed away at the Institute of Rotary Cancer Hospital at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) after a prolonged battle with cancer on Saturday afternoon. He was 65.
Sh. Das is survived by his wife and three sons.
“Das was admitted to AIIMS last Monday and breathed his last at 3.45 pm,” his close associates said.
Sh. Kalpataru Das, who served as a cabinet minister in the Naveen Patnaik government between 2012-14, was elected to Rajya Sabha last year.
In a political career spanning close to 40 years, Kalpataru Das held several important positions in various bodies and organisations and was elected four times to the Odisha Legislative Assembly.
He had also worked as the state Panchayati Raj and Parliamentary Affairs minister.
Sh. Das was born on August 15, 1950 at Bhotaka in Jajpur district of Odisha. Hailed as an active social worker, he saw a steady rise in his political career, having served as the general secretary of the state Janata Dal from 1990 to 1995.
He was elected to the Assembly from the Dharmashala constituency four times in succession since 1990 – the first time on a Janata Dal ticket and the next three times on BJD ticket. In the 2014 Assembly elections, however, his son Pranab Balabantaray was nominated from his seat while Sh. Kalpataru Das was nominated for the Rajya Sabha.
He joined Biju Janata Dal in December 18, 1997 and became the party’s vice president in 2012.