Former Union minister Nayaran Dutt Tiwari was hospitalised and put in intensive care on Wednesday after suffering from a brain stroke. The 91-year-old’s condition is serious, and he is being monitored at Max Hospital in Saket, New Delhi. According to his son, Rohit Shekhar Tiwari, he fell unconscious on Wednesday morning while having tea at his residence in the national capital.
Tiwari, who joined the Congress in 1963, is the only Indian politician to have served as chief minister of two states, Uttar Pradesh and later Uttarakhand. A Kumauni Brahmin, Tiwari first became chief minister of UP in 1976. His close ties to the Gandhi family, namely Indira and Sanjay Gandhi, helped him take over the post from Veer Bahadur Singh.
In 1984, Tiwari got his second chance at chief ministership in UP. While in power, he helped lead the Congress to victory in the state elections held months after Indira Gandhi’s assassination the same year. However, Rajiv Gandhi replaced him within months of the victory.
Tiwari came back to power in UP for the third time in 1988. However, the Congress suffered a historic defeat in 1989 and has struggled to regain hold of the state since — it has been 28 years. All three of Tiwari’s terms as CM were very brief, not lasting more than a year each.
Tiwari was elected to both Houses of Parliament during his days in the Congress. In 1980, he was elected to the 7th Lok Sabha. He held several portfolios during his tenure. In 1985, he was elected to the Rajya Sabha. He also served as Minister of External Affairs in Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi’s cabinet, from 1986-87.
In 2002, the Congress stalwart became chief minister of Uttarakhand. He is the only chief minister in the state to complete a five-year term.
Tiwari also served as Governor of Andhra Pradesh between 2007 and 2009. He resigned after a sting operation allegedly showing him in a compromising position at Raj Bhavan with three women was released. He thereafter resigned cited his health as the reason.
Tiwari was also embroiled in a controversy after lawyer Rohit Shekhar filed a paternity suit claiming Tiwari was his biological father. In his petition to the Delhi High Court, Shekhar claimed he was born out of an illegitimate relationship between the Congress veteran and his mother Ujjwala. Denying the charge, Tiwari initially refused to undergo DNA tests, but was later ordered to by the HC. The tests confirmed Rohit was his biological son. The Delhi HC passed an order on the same in 2014.
In January this year, ahead of the Uttarakhand Assembly elections, Tiwari and Rohit joined the BJP in the presence of party president Amit Shah.