Rajahmundry (AP): Senior Congress leader and former Andhra Pradesh Minister Jakkampudi Ramamohan Rao passed away on Sunday at the age of 58 at a private hospital here, family members said.
He is survived by wife, two sons and a daughter.
Rao, who was suffering from diabetic neuropathy for the last four years, was rushed to the hospital in the morning after he complained of throat pain.
A staunch supporter of late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, Rao had actively launched a campaign against TDP when N T Rama Rao was Chief Minister of the state.
Rao, who was elected to Andhra Pradesh legislative Assembly thrice from Kadiaym constituency in 1989, 1999 and 2004 respectively, played a vital role in a 'padyatra' organised by late YSR, which catapulted Congress to power.
An agriculturist by profession, Rao was born in Adduru village in Mammidikuduru Mandal of East Godavari district.
He had served as Roads and Building Minister in Y S Rajasekhara Reddy Cabinet in 2004.
Rao was known for his organisational skills which ensured Congress bagging 18 out of 21 Assembly seats in East Godavari district in the last election.
He, however, later defected the Congress to join the YSR Congress Party floated by Kadapa MP Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, son of Rajasekhara Reddy.
His wife Vijayalakshmi was expelled by the Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee from the party for contesting against an official candidate in local bodies election.
Known for his political acumen, Rao was deep-rooted in understanding the caste-based equations and how they weigh in winning elections.
Several leaders and state ministers condoled the death of the former Excise Minister.
In his condolence message, State Stamps and Registration Minister Thota Narasimham said, "Rao was like a bridge between the government and people who built a good relationship with the government and people of East Godavari district."
Tourism Minister V Vasanth Kumar reminisced about his acquaintance with Rao and conveyed his condolences to the bereaved family members.
Animal Husbandry Minister P Viswaroop recalled Rao's services to the district saying, "We lost a close friend. Rao has close relationship with Konaseema area. He worked hard for uplifting poor sections."
According to family members, Rao's funeral will be held on Monday afternoon. YSR Congress Chief and Kadapa MP Y S Jaganmohan Reddy will be attending the funeral.
Several cabinet ministers, including Thota Narasimhamam, P Viswaroop, paid their last respect to the departed leader.
Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy also conveyed his condolences to the bereaved family members of Rao.
As a mark of respect to Rao, all business establishments and institutions here will remain close on Monday.