India, Aug. 24 -- Except good health, Arun Jaitley had all that he could attain or destiny could bestow: prosperity, power, fame, and above all, a fine brain. He knew it, and would lament often that painful reality of his plentiful life.

I remember vividly his spontaneous remark while asking a major domo to fetch the home-cooked, olive oil paranthas he would share with others over lunch in Parliament house. He said God had given him everything except health ("Ishwar ne sab kuch diya hai sehat ke alava.")

I couldn't but help recall our conversation in Parliament House when he spoke to me last on phone from his sick bed. That was the day after he wrote, and made public, a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in which he opted out of his...