Shimla: Senior BJP leader and three times Theog Legislature Rakesh Verma died of cardiac arrest today evening. He was 59.

He was brought dead at Indira Gandhi Medical College (IGMC) at 7.30 pm today here, IGMC senior medical superintendent Dr Janak Raj said.

Rakesh Verma had entered Vidhan Sabha in 1993 by defeating then CM aspirant and Congress stalwart Vidya Stokes from Theog assembly constituency. He again represented the assembly segment in 2003 and 2007.

Himachal CM condoled the death of Rakesh Verma. In his twit Jai Ram Thakur remembered his contribution in developing Theog region and termed his untimely death a loss for the state.

Former Chief Minister and Veteran politician Prem Kumar Dhumal termed a death of Rakesh Verma his personal loss. He stated that he has lost a true and trusted friend.

State BJP president and former Vidhan Sabha Speaker Dr. Rajeev Bindal condoled the death of Rakesh Verma.

Congress leader and Shimla Rural legislature Vikramaditya Singh also condoled the untimely passing away of Rakesh Verma. Singh called him a thorough gentleman and kind person. He prayed God to give strength to the family to bear this great loss.

CPM leader and former Shimla mayor Sanjay Chauhan also condoled the death of Rakesh Verma

Rakesh Verma is credited for connected remote villages of Theog assembly segment with motorable road. Rakesh Verma was elected to the Vidhan Sabha at a tender age of 32 on BJP ticket by defeating Congress stalwart and then CM aspirant Vidya Stokes from the strong Congress bastion Theog. Though, he lost to her in 1998 assembly election, but Verma forced her to switched to the nearby Kumarsen legislative assembly segment in 2003. He won from Theog in 2003 as an independent candidate and again in 2007 he defeated Congress candidate. He contested 2007 election as an independent candidate.

In 2012 he contested agaoin on BJP ticket from newly shaped Theog assembly segment, and lost to old political rival Vidya Stokes with narrow margin. He again lost in 2017 assembly segment to a CPM candidate.