Bengaluru: Veteran BJP leader HN Ananth Kumar breathed his last at a private hospital in Bengaluru at 2 AM today. He was 59 and was suffering from cancer. Politicians including PM Modi and Karnataka's BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa spoke of Kumar's contribution to Karnataka and Kannada.

Ananth Kumar was the first person to speak in the United Nations (UN) in Kannada language. It is a rare opportunity to get a chance to speak in the UN. Ananth Kumar utilised that raree opportunity on October 15, 2015.

He was addressing the UN at its 67th general meeting in Kannada. He had started his speech by saying, "Sanmanya adhyakshare matthu vishwada nanna preethiya sahodara, sahodariyare, nimagellarigu nanna munjanega shubhashayagalu..."

Which translates to: "Respected chairperson and dear brothers and sisters from across the world, I wish you all a very good morning..."

Further speaking in Kannada, he had said that India has vowed to protect human rights, world peace and keep a check on terrorism. The work and fight put up by the justice department of the United Nations in controlling crime in the international sphere are commendable."

He was serving as the chairperson of External Affairs Standing Committee.