Chandigarh, Oct 6 (PTI) Former Punjab minister Sewa Singh Sekhwan, 71, died on Wednesday after prolonged illness, according to his son Jagroop Singh Sekhwan.

Jagroop Singh shared the news of his father's demise on social media.

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Several political leaders, including Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi and his Delhi counterpart Arvind Kejriwal, condoled Sekhwan's death.

"I convey my heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of former Minister S. Sewa Singh Sekhwan. With his death, a void has been created in the political circles. His services towards overall development of border area and welfare of its people would be ever remembered by one & all," Channi tweeted.

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Kejriwal said he was "deeply saddened" by the news of Sekhwan's death and recalled that the former minister had recently joined the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

Sekhwan had joined the AAP on August 26 when Kejriwal, who is also the party's national convenor, had visited his house in his native village in Punjab's Gurdaspur district.

Shiromani Akali Dal chief Sukhbir Singh Badal also expressed grief over Sekhwan's death.

"Deeply saddened by Jathedar Sewa Singh Sekhwan ji's demise. Political differences apart, I recall his long association with @Akali_Dal during struggles for Punjab's interests. My Ardas to Akal Purakh for peace to departed soul & strength to family to bear this loss," Badal said in a tweet.

Before joining the AAP, Sekhwan was a senior vice-president of the Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa-led Shiromani Akali Dal (Sanyukt).

He quit the Shiromani Akali Dal in 2018 after raising a banner of revolt against the party leadership.

Thereafter, Sekhwan and former MPs Ranjit Singh Brahmpura and Rattan Singh Ajnala formed the SAD (Taksali).

He later switched over to the SAD (Democratic), formed by Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa last year.

The SAD (Sanyukt) was floated in May this year after the dissolution of the SAD (Democratic) and the SAD (Taksali).

Sekhwan was a minister in the Parkash Singh Badal-led Punjab government in 1997. He again became a minister in the Akali government in 2009.

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