New Delhi, April 12 (IANS) Sports Minister Vijay Goel has condoled the death of Badminton Association of India (BAI) President Akhilesh Das Gupta.

Gupta died in Lucknow on Wednesday following cardiac arrest, according to his family. He was 56.

“Akhilesh Das Gupta was a multifaceted personality who contributed immensely in the field of education, government and sports administration,” Goel said in his condolence message.

“In Akhilesh Das Gupta’s death, I have lost not only a personal friend but also a fellow sports administrator whose contribution in the promotion of badminton will always be remembered,” he added.

Recalling his last meeting with Gupta during the recently concluded India Open World Superseries 2017 here, the Sports Minister said he will always cherish his fond memories.

During Gupta’s time at the helm of the BAI, Indian shuttlers performed well at the international level, winning medals at the London Olympics in 2012 and the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Son of former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Banarasi Das Gupta, he was admitted to the Lari Cardiology Centre after he complained of distress, a family member told IANS.

Gupta was Minister of State for Steel in the Manmohan Singh-led government in 2004-09. He was also a former Mayor of Lucknow.

Gupta was a three-time Rajya Sabha member — twice from the Congress and once from the Bahujan Samaj Party.

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