New Delhi, Aug 13 The Congress has blamed 'toxic' TV debate for the untimely demise of its spokesperson Rajiv Tyagi, who passed away on Wednesday after suffering a cardiac arrest.
The Congress leader had attended a television debate at 5 p.m. and complained of chest pain soon after the programme ended. He then fell unconscious and was rushed to the Yashoda Hospital, where doctors pronounced him dead.
Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala tweeted, "Till when will toxic debates and venomous spokespersons continue to kill sober and simple people? Till when TV channels will continue to run the TRP business through such debates? Till when will divisive communal agenda continue to poison the soul of the country? Till when? #rajiv_tyagi."
Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi, former party chief Rahul Gandhi and senior leader Priyanka Gandhi spoke to Tyagi's wife and extended their condolences.
Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet, "Congress has lost a lion. We will always remember his love for the party. My condolences are with the family."
"Shocked to hear about the tragic demise of Shri Rajiv Tyagi. He was too young and had a long life ahead of him. It is a big loss for the party. My heart goes out to his family & wellwishers. May God give them the strength in this hour of grief," tweeted senior leader Ahmed Patel.
A resident of Ghaziabad, Tyagi was a member of the Uttar Pradesh Congress before becoming the party's national spokesperson.
The Congress in a statement said, "We are deeply saddened by the sudden demise of Rajiv Tyagi, a staunch Congressman and a true patriot. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends in this hour of grief."
Congress leader Jitin Prasada said, "I am shocked and deeply saddened by his untimely demise."
BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said, "I can't believe that my friend Rajiv Tyagi is not with us any more. He was in a debate with me at 5 p.m. Life is uncertain."
( With inputs from IANS )