Shantaram Laxman Naik (72), the veteran Goa Congress leader and former Rajya Sabha MP, has passed away in Margao, Goa on June 9, 2018. Beginning his political career in 1967, Naik joined the Congress as a party worker. A multiple-time Member of Parliament (MP), Naik was one of the tallest leaders of the Congress in Goa. Naik was elected to the Lok Sabha from the South Goa constituency in the 1984 general election. He was instrumental in the passage of the Goa Statehood Bill that consequently granted statehood to Goa on May 30, 1987. He represented Goa in the Rajya Sabha for two consecutive terms — 2005-2011 and 2011-2017. However, in July 2017, he lost the election to the Upper House of Parliament to BJP candidate Vinay Tendulkar. In March 2018, Naik resigned as president of the Goa Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) to pave the way for the younger generation to take the reins of the party.