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Bengaluru: B.N. Vijaykumar, the 60-year old two-time Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator from Jayanagar constituency in Bengaluru, died on Friday.

Considered one of the most accessible legislators, Vijaykumar collapsed while campaigning for the 12 May Karnataka assembly polls. He was taken to Jayadeva Hospital in Bengaluru where he died of a cardiac arrest, according to the BJP media cell. Vijaykumar was the BJP’s candidate from Jayanagar.

Hours after his death, condolence messages poured in from political leaders and citizens alike.

“I am deeply pained at the untimely demise of my friend & party stalwart Jayanagar MLA Shri @BNVijaykumar. May God give strength to his family to bear this huge loss. We will work to strengthen his ideals," B.S.Yeddyurappa, BJP state president said on Twitter on Friday.

Vijaykumar’s death could seriously hamper the chances of Soumya Reddy, daughter of Karnataka home minister Ramalinga Reddy, who was making her electoral debut against the senior BJP leader. A senior election official in Karnataka said that once the returning officer collects the death certificate an order of adjournment of the poll would be passed.

Bengaluru South is a BJP stronghold, and Vijaykumar had earlier said that he would comfortably win the seat against Soumya Reddy. Vijaykumar held several positions within the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and contested several elections from the BJP.

“A very rare person like him was an asset and strength to democracy. My heartfelt shradhanjali to Sri BN Vijayakumar and I pray God that his very large followers, well wishers, family and friends get the strength to bear this big loss," Ananth Kumar, union minister and member of Parliament from Bengaluru South, said on Twitter.

Vijaykumar was a close associate of Ananth Kumar.

“In his sudden death society has lost a very rare public representative known for his honest & selfless service. In today’s world of power at all cost & money driven politics, he kept himself away both these – only to dedicate himself for public service," Ananth Kumar said.

Vijaykumar had won the title of ‘Best MLA’ two times, the union minister said.

Other senior BJP leaders also took to Twitter to share their grief over the death of the leader.

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