Ahmed Patel
Treasurer of All India Congress Committee
In office
2018 – 25 November 2020
Preceded byMotilal Vora
Succeeded byPawan Kumar Bansal (Interim)
Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha
In office
19 August 1993 – 25 November 2020
Succeeded byDineshchandra Anavadiya
Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha
In office
Preceded byMansinhji Rana
Succeeded byChandubhai Deshmukh[1]
Personal details
Born(1949-08-21)21 August 1949
Bharuch, Bombay State, India
(now in Gujarat, India)
Died25 November 2020(2020-11-25) (aged 71)
Gurugram, Haryana, India
Cause of deathCOVID-19
Political partyIndian National Congress
Memoona Patel
(m. 1976)
Children2, including Faisal Patel
Alma materSouth Gujarat University

Ahmedbhai Muhammedbhai Patel (21 August 1949 – 25 November 2020),[2] also known as Ahmed Patel, was an Indian politician and Member of Parliament from the Indian National Congress.[3] He was the political secretary to Congress President Sonia Gandhi.[4][5]

Patel has represented Gujarat for eight terms in the Parliament of India; three times in the lower house or Lok Sabha (1977–1989) and five times in the upper House or Rajya Sabha (1993–2020). He was also the treasurer of the All India Congress Committee (2018–2020).

Early life

Patel was born on 21 August 1949, in the small village piraman, Ta-Ankleshwar, dist-Bharuch-based agriculturalist family, as the third child of Mohammed Ishaakji Patel and Hawaben Mohammedbhai in the western Indian state of Gujarat.[6] His father was a social worker. He went on to join the Youth Congress, the youth wing of the Indian National Congress.[7]

Political career

Patel started his political career by contesting local body elections in the Bharuch District of Gujarat in 1976.[8]

He was selected by the then Indian Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, in 1977 to contest elections for the Sixth Lok Sabha from Bharuch. He went on to win the elections, and also won subsequent Lok Sabha elections in 1980 and 1984, continuing to represent Bharuch in the Parliament through 1989.[7] In 1985, he went on to become the Parliamentary Secretary to then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.[9] In 1987, in his capacity as Member of Parliament, he had helped set up the Narmada Management Authority to monitor the Sardar Sarovar Project.[10][11] He was appointed the secretary of the Jawahar Bhavan Trust in 1988 and is credited with having completed the construction of the Jawahar Bhavan in time for Nehru's birth centenary celebrations.[12]

In 2005, Ahmed Patel was inducted into the Rajya Sabha for his fourth term. Though considered Sonia Gandhi's chief strategist, he chose to keep out of the UPA government in the 14th and 15th Lok Sabha between 2004 and 2014.[13] Patel is only the second Muslim after Ehsan Jafri to be elected as a Lok Sabha MP in Gujarat.[14]

He served as political secretary to Sonia Gandhi, the president of the Indian National Congress. He had served as the parliamentary secretary to the late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1985. He had also been appointed as the treasurer of the All India Congress Committee in 2018, replacing senior party member Motilal Vora.[15]

His last election to the Rajya Sabha in 2017, was heavily contested with the Gujarat state legislators being taken away to the southern state of Karnataka in order to prevent dissent, and select defectors being disqualified for revealing their ballots before casting them.[16] This ended up being the first Rajya Sabha election from Gujarat to be contested in decades, while prior candidates had been elected unopposed.[15][7]

Political legacy

During the UPA Government regime between 2004 and 2014, Patel was one of the chief troubleshooters, coordinators and translators between the government and party.[17]

In 2005, he had got Bharuch included as one of the first five districts to be covered under the then launched Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana, to boost electrification in the district. The Sardar Patel bridge to de-congest traffic between the twin cities of Bharuch and Ankleshwar has also been one of his contributions to the region.[18][19] The establishment of Sardar Patel Hospital & Heart Institute in Ankleshwar is also credited to his efforts

He was considered a part of the power center in the Congress party due to his proximity to the president, Sonia Gandhi.[15]

Personal life

Patel was married to Memoona Ahmed Patel in 1976. The couple had a daughter and a son.[20][21] He was known to keep a low profile and rarely interacted with the media.[22]


He died on 25 November 2020, due to multiple organ failure stemming from COVID-19. He had been admitted to the Medanta Hospital and was in the ICU upon being diagnosed with COVID-19.[23] His dead body was taken to his ancestral village in Gujarat, and was buried there.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "Biographical Sketch of Member of 12th Lok Sabha". Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  2. ^ "Congress veteran Ahmed Patel passes away following Covid complications". The Times of India. 25 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  3. ^ "Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel passes away". NetIndian. New Delhi. 25 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  4. ^ "Members Page". Archived from the original on 29 May 2011. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  5. ^ Congress likely to field ex-MLA Rasheedaben from Bharuch – Express India Archived 26 September 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Ahmed Patel". Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  7. ^ a b c "Ahmed Patel: Sonia Gandhi's most trusted advisor, top Congress troubleshooter". DNA India. 25 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  8. ^ Staff Writer (25 November 2020). "Ahmed Patel's last tweet was a condolence message for another political giant". mint. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  9. ^ "Detailed Profile – Shri Ahmed Patel – Members of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) – Who's Who – Government: National Portal of India". Archive.india.gov.in. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
  10. ^ "Press Information Bureau Archive". Retrieved 8 November 2014.
  11. ^ "Ahmed Patel". Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  12. ^ "Jawahar Bhavan: Swank new headquarters for Congress(I) : INDIASCOPE – India Today". indiatoday.intoday.in. 31 July 1989. Retrieved 8 November 2014.
  13. ^ "Ahmed Patel was the go-to man in Congress, a staunch Gandhi family loyalist". mint. 25 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  14. ^ "Gujarat results comforting for backroom boy Ahmed Patel". The Times of India. 19 May 2009. Archived from the original on 24 October 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
  15. ^ a b c Nair, Sobhana K. (25 November 2020). "Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel dies due to multiple organ failure". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  16. ^ "Ahmed Patel". Business Standard India. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  17. ^ "The leader's team". Frontline.in. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
  18. ^ "Work on extradosed bridge over Narmada begins". The Times of India. 4 May 2014. Retrieved 8 November 2014.
  19. ^ "Union Cabinet okays new river bridge over Narmada at Bharuch". deshgujarat.com. 26 December 2013. Retrieved 8 November 2014.
  20. ^ Detailed Profile – Shri Ahmed Patel – Members of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) – Who's Who – Government: National Portal of India
  21. ^ "Ahmed Patel inaugurates HMP Dediapada Healthcare Centre". DeshGujarat. 21 February 2015.
  22. ^ "Congress veteran Ahmed Patel succumbs to post-Covid complications at 71". India Today. 25 November 2020. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  23. ^ "Congress Veteran Ahmed Patel Dies at 71 After Battling Covid". ndtv.com. 25 November 2020.
Rajya Sabha Preceded byNA Member of Parliamentfor Gujarat 1993 Succeeded byIncumbent Lok Sabha Preceded byMansinhji Rana Member of Parliamentfor Bharuch 1977–1989 Succeeded byChandubhai Deshmukh