Jaitley Undergoes Surgery in US, Advised 2 Weeks Rest

NEW DELHI — Union Minister Arun Jaitley has undergone surgery at a hospital in New York on Tuesday, sources said.

He has been advised at least two weeks rest by the doctors, they added.

Jaitley, who had unexpectedly left for the US on January 13, has undergone tests for soft tissue cancer, sources said. Even during this time, he has been active on social media, writing Facebook posts and tweeting about current issues.

Jaitley, who is 66 years old, had undergone a kidney transplant surgery on May 14, 2018, at AIIMS and had not travelled abroad since then.

Jaitley was earlier this month named the publicity head of the BJP for the upcoming general elections.

With barely a week left for the 2019-20 budget, the Narendra Modi government on Wednesday gave additional charge of the Finance and Corporate Affairs portfolios to Railways and Coal Minister Piyush Goyal.

The interim budget for 2019-20 would be presented in Parliament on February 1.

Jaitley is now a minister without portfolio in the Modi government.

Earlier on May 14, 2018, when Jaitley underwent a renal surgery and was out of the finance ministry for nearly 100 days, Goyal was given additional charge of the finance ministry.

Jaitley had stopped attending office since the beginning of April 2018.

On August 23, 2018, Jaitley returned as finance minister and in the next few months, he had limited public interaction in order to ward off any infection.

Jaitley has been the finance minister in the Modi government right from the time it came to power in May 2014. He, however, was a minister without a portfolio between May 14, 2018, and August 23, 2018.

A Rajya Sabha MP since 2000, Jaitley was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh last year. Jaitley is also the leader of the House.

Jaitley had undergone a bariatric surgery soon after the BJP government came to power at the Centre in 2014. The surgery, to treat weight gain that he suffered because of a long-standing diabetic condition, was first performed at Max Hospital, but he then had to be shifted to AIIMS because of complications.


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