Former Indian PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee passes away

17 August, 2018, 19:03 | Author: Donnie King
  • Amitabh Bachchan Atal Bihari Vajpayee

India's top leaders and politicians are visiting the New Delhi hospital where doctors say Vajpayee is in critical condition after a prolonged illness.

Modi said Vajpayee's passing is a "personal and irreplaceable" loss for him and that his futuristic policies across various sectors touched the lives of each and every citizen of India.

It was widely reported that the former prime minister had a stroke in 2009 that severely affected his ability to speak and confined him to his home.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee was one of the founding members of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which now governs India. Bhutanese King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali were among the foreign dignitaries who arrived here to pay their last respects to the former prime minister.

He again served as India's prime minister from 1999 to 2004.

A lifelong bachelor, Vajpayee was first elected to Lok Sabha in 1957 from Balrampur in Uttar Pradesh in India's second general elections.

His peace efforts began with a groundbreaking bus ride to Lahore, Pakistan, in February 1999, where he met with then-Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. He subsequently developed dementia, and has had trouble with cognition and memory.

The government announced the national flag will be flown at half staff in mourning for seven days at government offices and Indian embassies overseas.

Vajpayee was born on December 25, 1924, in Gwalior, in central India. Today, his birthday is celebrated as "Good Governance Day". Following a brief flirtation with communism, he became a full-time worker of RSS in 1947. According to a notification, which was issued just after his demise. In his message, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo overnight recalled that Vajpayee in his address to the US Congress in 2000, had "famously characterised US-India ties as a 'natural partnership of shared endeavors. rom Moscow, Russian president Vladimir Putin in a message to his Indian counterpart Ram Nath Kovind said: "Atal Bihari Vajpayee rightly commanded great respect around the world". "RIP Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee". My condolences to his family & all his admirers.

The body of Vajpayee was later taken to Bharatiya Janata Party's national headquarters at Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg.

Vajpayee boosted trade with the United States, and he helped organize a 2000 visit to Delhi by President Bill Clinton, the first American president to visit India since Jimmy Carter did so in 1978.

The funeral procession would leave the BJP headquarters at 1 pm and the last rites would be performed at 4 pm, he said.


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