Veteran BJP leader and former governor of Gujarat and Rajasthan Kailashpati Mishra died at his residence in Patna on Saturday after prolonged illness, party sources said.

89-year-old Mishra, who had served as governor of Gujarat from May 7, 2003 to July 7, 2004 and for a brief period of Rajasthan too during the same duration, was born at Dudharchak in Buxara district in 1923. He was a bachelor.

Mr. Mishra had served as finance minister in the government of Karpoori Thakur in Bihar in 1977. In 1980, he became the first BJP Bihar president. He also served as BJP national Vice President from 1995 to 2003.

While studying in class X, Mr. Mishra was arrested for picketing at the main gate of his school at Buxar in support of 1942 Quit India movement.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, his deputy and senior Bihar BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi visited his residence to pay condolence. Mr. Kumar said Mr. Mishra would be cremated with state honour.

State BJP President C P Thakur said the body of Mr. Mishra, who had his roots in the Jan Sangh, would be taken to assembly first. Thereafter his body would be kept at the state party headquarters before cremation tomorrow.

Leader of Opposition in state Assembly Abdul Bari Siddiqui, Bihar Congress chief Chaudhary Mehboob Ali Kaiser and RJD President Ramchandra Purve among others also condoled the death.