George Fernandes, India’s Only Minister of Kashmir Affairs, Dead

NEW DELHI: Former defence minister George Fernandes passed away Tuesday following a prolonged illness, his family sources said.

Fernandes was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Recently, he contracted swine flu, they said.

The National Front Government of V.P. Singh made him Minister for Kashmir Affairs in addition to the charge as Railway Minister.

Fernandes was India’s defence minister in the NDA government headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

He was a key member of the Janata Dal and is the founder of the Samata Party.