How to run the House with a smile and “I learnt this from him”, Sumitra Mahajan says on PA Sangma

New Delhi: Former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno Agitok Sangma died of a heart attack here on Friday. He was 68.

P.A. Sangma

Parliament sources said the end came this morning after he suffered a heart attack.

Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan announced the news of his death in the House, which was adjourned for the day.

While expressing deep grief over Sangma’s passing away, Ms. Mahajan said he knew how to run the House with a smile and “I learnt this from him.”

“A man of masses, Sangma strove relentlessly for the amelioration of the marginalised sections,” the Speaker said.

Condoling the death of Sangma, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he was “a self-made leader whose contribution towards the development of the North East is monumental.

Saddened by his demise.Sangma’s tenure as Lok Sabha Speaker “is unforgettable”. His down-to-earth personality and affable nature endeared him to many,” he said, adding “Sangmaji was deeply influenced by Netaji Bose.”

Sangma was a nine-time member of Lok Sabha and the Speaker in the 11th Lok Sabha. He had also held important portfolios in the central government.

He was also the Chief Minister of Meghalaya from 1988 to 1990 and Leader of Opposition in the assembly from 1990 to 1991.

Born on September 1, 1947 in village Chapahati in the picturesque West Garo Hills District of Meghalaya, Sangma grew up in the small tribal village and struggled hard to rise in life.

After completing his graduation from St Anthony’s College, he went to Dibrugarh University in Assam for his Masters degree in International Relations. Subsequently, he also obtained a degree in Law.

A Congressman who was one of the founding members of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), was expelled from it in July 2012 when he refused to accept his party’s decision to quit the race for India’s President. In January 2013, he had formed the National People’s Party.

Government Positions held by Purno Agitok Sangma

1974 – Vice President of Meghalaya Pradesh Youth Congress
1975 – The General Secretary of the Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee
1977 – Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
1980 – Joint Secretary of the All India Congress Committee
1980 – Deputy Minister in charge of Industry
1982 – Deputy Minister, Ministry of Commerce
1984 – Re-elected, Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
1984 – Minister of State holding charge of Commerce and Supply
1984 – Minister of State for Home Affairs
1986 – Minister of State for Labour with Independent Charge
1988 – Member, Meghalaya Legislative Assembly
1988 – Chief Minister of Meghalaya
1990 – Leader of Opposition, Meghalaya Legislative Assembly
1991 – Re-elected, Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
1991-93 – Union Minister of State, Coal (Independent Charge)
1993-95 – Union Minister of State, Labour (Independent Charge)
February–September 1995 – Union Minister of State, Labour
1995-96 – Union Cabinet Minister of Information and Broadcasting
1996 – Re-elected, Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
1996-98 – Speaker of Lok Sabha -Chairman, (i) Business Advisory Committee; (ii) Rules Committee; (iii) General Purposes Committee; (iv) Standing Committee of the Conference of Presiding Officers of the Legislative Bodies in India; and (v) Institute of Constitutional and Parliamentary Studies;
President, (i) Indian Parliamentary Group, (ii) National Group of Inter-Parliamentary Union; and (iii) India Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association

1998 – Re-elected, Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
1998 – Member, Committee on External Affairs and its Sub-Committee-I
1998 – Vice-President, Indian Institute of Public Administration
1998 – Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of External Affairs
1999 – Re-elected, Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
1999 – Member, Committee on Labour and Welfare
2000 – Member, National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution
2002 – Member, Committee on External Affairs
2003 – Member, Committee on Home Affairs
2004 – Re-elected, Member of Parliament, Tura constituency
2004 – Member, Committee on External Affairs, Member, Committee on Private Members Bills and Resolutions, Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Home Affairs
2006 – Re-elected to Lok Sabha as N.C.P. candidate on 23.2.2006, Tura constituency
2008 – Member, Meghalaya Legislative Assembly