Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Minister for Agriculture Sardar Akhtar Hussain Rabbani passed away at a private hospital in Islamabad on Wednesday after a prolonged illness.
Rabbani’s health had been deteriorating over the last few months due to a kidney ailment. The body of the deceased minister has been sent to his native town, Baloch Poonch, for burial in his ancestral graveyard. His funeral prayers will be held at 1 pm today (Thursday) in Chookiyan Baloch village.
Rabbani was elected as a member of the legislative assembly (MLA) from LA-22 Sudhonoti and Poonch–VI constituency in the state’s 2011 general elections. He was one the senior leaders of the Pakistan Peoples’ Party (PPP) in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and had also served as an adviser to Benazir Bhutto during her time as prime minister.
Meanwhile, former president Asif Ali Zardari, AJK Prime Minister Chaudhry Abdul Majeed, AJK President Sardar Yaqoob Khan and Opposition leader in AJK Legislative Assembly Raja Farooq Haider Khan sent condolence messages and expressed sympathy with Rabbani’s family.
Majeed also declared Thursday (today) an official holiday in Poonch Division to mourn the death.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 26th, 2013.