Nanded (Maharashtra):Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Thursday paid tributes to the memory of Shankarrao B. Chavan, who twice served as Maharashtra Chief Minister, on the occasion of his 96th birth anniversary. "Known as a 'headmaster', Chavan was a close confidante of late prime ministers Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. He served the party and country with distinction in different capacities," Gandhi said here in her tribute to the Congressman who died in 2004. Gandhi, along with former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, unveiled a full-size statue and a museum-cum-library dedicated to Chavan in the presence of his son Ashok Chavan, also a former Maharashtra chief minister. Other Congress politicians in attendance were Shivraj Patil, Sushilkumar Shinde, D.Y. Patil, Prithviraj Chavan, Narayan Rane, Vishali Vilasrao Deshmukh and M.A. Naseem Khan. Apart from serving twice as the chief minister, Chavan served as union minister under prime ministers Rajiv Gandhi and P.V. Narasimha Rao, handling various portfolios including home, finance, external affairs, defence, education and was deputy chairman of the Planning Commission. Shortly after their arrival in Nanded, Gandhi and Manmohan Singh offered prayers at Hazur Sahib, a historic gurudwara that memorializes the death of Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th Sikh Guru.