Sushma Swaraj, a veteran leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and former Minister of External Affairs in the Narendra Modi government in its first term, died on August 6, 2019, following a heart attack. She was 67. She breathed her last in New Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), where she had been brought in a critical condition after suffering a cardiac arrest.
Besides being external affairs minister for the entire first term of the Modi government, she was also the Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs from May 26, 2014, to January 7, 2016. She represented Madhya Pradesh’s Vidisha constituency in the 16th Lok Sabha.
She had joined the Bharatiya Janata Party after the Emergency of 1975. Swaraj had won her first election at the age of 25 in 1977 from the Ambala Cantonment Assembly constituency. In July 1977, she had become a Cabinet Minister in the Janata Party Government under Chief Minister Devi Lal. She taken got the position of the state president of Janata Party (Haryana) in 1979. Swaraj was also the Education Minister in the Bharatiya Janata Party–Lok Dal coalition government in Haryana during 1987-1990.
A Cabinet minister in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Swaraj had held the portfolios of Health and Family Welfare, Information and Broadcasting at different junctures. She was the Chief Minister of Delhi from October 13, 1998 to December 3, 1998.
In November 2018, Sushma Swaraj had announced that she would not contest the Lok Sabha elections in 2019 due to health reasons.