Recalling his first Assembly election victory in 2001 from the Jalukbari constituency, Assam Health and Finance minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has shared a picture of him with former Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on social media.

Paying tribute to the veteran leader who had passed away on November 23, Sarma wrote, “In 2001. After my first election victory from Jalukbari LAC. #TributeToTarunGogoi”

Saddened by the demise of the Congress strongman, Sarma said, “From 1997 to yesterday, it was a long-time relationship with him. There were many ups and downs. But, Tarun Gogoi will be remembered forever by the Assamese for his contributions.”

Sarma told reporters on Tuesday that his last ‘proper conversation’ with his one-time mentor and former Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, was prior to his birthday on October 11.

The minister, who visited Gogoi almost daily since he was admitted to the hospital, said that he spoke to him as discussions were on to celebrate his birthday in the hospital.

Sarma said that he told Gogoi that a gathering may result in him “getting infected and it will be better not to celebrate his birthday in this way but his family members can come and spend time with him”.

“He immediately agreed, did not ask a question and said-Yes Himanta, whatever you say,” Sarma said.

This was the “last proper conversation that I had with him but on my regular visits, I would enquire about his health and he would say that he was fine”, Sarma added.