Bhatt, who was suffering from oral cancer, worked closely with Modi to strengthen BJP in Central Gujarat. He has left BJP in 2002 when he was not given Assembly election ticket. He then joined BSP.
Bhatt was the Education Minister during the Keshubhai Patel government and also held the Health portfolio during BJP- Janata Dal coalition. He later on returned to BJP on the eve of the 2012 Assembly Election. Though he had a fallout with Modi, he later on joined forces with him.
Upon hearing about his illness, Modi had visited Bhatt a couple of months ago. He had developed oral cancer seven years ago and his condition had deteriorated in the last two years.
He was creamated on Thursday evening in the presence of BJP Ministers and state authoritites. He is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son.