The mortal remains of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee are being taken to Smriti Sthal for the funeral.
Bhutan King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk and former Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai led foreign dignitaries including Nepal's Minister for Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali, Sri Lanka's Acting Foreign Minister Lakshman Kiriella and Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali in paying homage.
Reacting to the sad development which has shocked the country, Sudheendra Kulkarni, Ex-aide to former PM, said he worked with Kulkarni for 6 years, he treated everyone with respect, he further said that Vajpayee had asserted that the Kashmir dispute cannot be solved constitutionally, and only by the boundaries of humanity.
PTI Chairman and prime minister-in-waiting Imran Khan on Thursday expressed condolences over the demise of the leader, saying his efforts for India-Pakistan peace will always be remembered.More news: Watch Deontay Wilder Crash Tyson Fury’s Weigh-In, Clash With Fighter’s Dad
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From 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". The Chief Advisor of the Interim Government, Chairman of the Privy Council, and senior government officials also attended the prayer ceremony. "The government and people of Pakistan extend their heartfelt condolences to his family, government and people of India", the statement read.
"During his tenure, Prime Minister Vajpayee advocated for a robust partnership with the United States, referring to us as natural allies".
It was during Vajpayee's term as prime minister that India's ties with Israel became more public after the two countries established diplomatic relations in 1992.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee, one of India's most charismatic leaders who led the nation through several crises and held together a tenuous coalition with his inclusive politics, died on Aug 16 in New Delhi. "His passing away marks the end of an era", Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a tweet.