Panaji, June 9: Former Congress MP Shantaram Naik passed away in the wee hours of Saturday. The 72-year-old suffered a heart attack and died after being rushed to a private hospital in Margao.
Naik has served as a lawmaker for the Congress in Rajya Sabha for two consecutive terms. During his tenure, Naik was the party's chief whip in the Parliament's Upper House.
The veteran leader had also served as an MP in Lok Sabha, representing the North Goa constituency between 1984 to 1989. He is recalled for introducing the highest number of private member bills in the 8th Lok Sabha.
Naik's journey in Goa politics dates back to 1967, when he was a student leader working for the Congress. Coming from a agrarian background, he went on to complete his studies in law. Between 1970s' and 80s', he served as the Special Public Prosecutor for Goa.
Naik is survived by his wife, Beena Naik, and son Archit Naik. Incidentally, Beena is the sister of renowned public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam.
In his public life stretching for nearly 50 years, Naik entered into a major controversy once after he recommended tourists in Goa not to socialise with strangers in order to avoid rape-like incidents. His remarks came in December 2009, after a Russian woman alleged to have been raped by a state politician.
Naik's last designation in public life was that of Goa Congress President. After being appointed to the post in July 2017, he submitted his resignation owing to differences with the state leaders of the party.