Veteran journalist Chandan Mitra passes away

New Delhi, Sep 02 (PTI): Former Rajya Sabha MP and veteran journalist Chandan Mitra died at his South Delhi residence late Wednesday night after ailing for some time. He was 65. Mitra was the editor of The Pioneer newspaper and was considered a respected voice on a variety of issues, ranging from politics to popular music, before poor health kept him out of the public eye for some time. The senior journalist is survived by his wife Shobori Ganguly and two sons. President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi were among a host of leaders who condoled his death.
Paying tributes, Prime Minister Modi remembered him for his intellect and insights while condoling his demise.
“Shri Chandan Mitra Ji will be remembered for his intellect and insights. He distinguished himself in the world of media as well as politics. Anguished by his demise. Condolences to his family and admirers. Om Shanti,” the PM said in a tweet.
The veteran journalist’s son Kushan Mitra said his father had been suffering for a while.
“Since it is already out there; Dad passed away late last night. He had been suffering for a while,” his son said in a tweet on Thursday.
Elected to Rajya Sabha as a BJP member twice, Chandan Mitra was considered close to BJP leader L K Advani.
He, however, resigned from the party and joined the Trinamool Congress in 2018.
BJP president J P Nadda expressed anguish at his death.
“He will be remembered for his distinguished career in the field of media and service for people. My thoughts and prayers are with his family in this time of grief. Om Shanti,” he said.
TMC president and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also condoled his death.
He will be remembered for his contribution to the world of journalism and politics, she said.
BJP MP Swapan Dasgupta posted a picture of Mitra and himself from a school trip in 1972 and wished for his friend to be happy wherever he was.
“I lost my closest friend-editor of Pioneer & former MP Chandan Mitra-this morning. We were together as students of La Martiniere & went on to St Stephen’s & Oxford. We joined journalism at the same time & shared the excitement of Ayodhya & the saffron wave,” he said in a tweet.
“I am posting a photograph of Chandan Mitra and me together during a school trip in 1972. Be happy my dear friend wherever you are. Om Shanti,” Dasgupta said.
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor fondly remembered Mitra as his campaign manager in the election for the St Stephen’s College Union Society.
“Deeply saddened by this news. Chandan was my campaign manager in my successful race to be President of the St Stephen’s College Union Society, served in my Cabinet and succeeded me. We remained in touch over the years, ironically till I returned to Delhi& politics separated us. RIP,” Tharoor tweeted.
In a statement, the Press Club of India condoled the demise of Mitra.
“Chandan Mitra was a stalwart editor who also had fruitful innings in The Statesman and as editor of Hindustan Times. Mitra mentored young reporters, and relaunched The Pioneer.
“His passing is a great loss. The Press Club of India stand with his family in this hour of loss,” it said.

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