Vajpayee's ashes taken for immersion, Lucknow shows 'Atal' love for him

TN CM, Stalin pay respects in Chennai
Report by: 
Lucknow, Chennai
23 Aug 2018

The ashes of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee were brought today to Lucknow, his political karmabhoomi, where they will be immersed in the Gomti river later in the day.
Union home minister Rajnath Singh along with Uttar Pradesh BJP chief Mahendra Nath Pandey and Vajpayee's family members arrived here with the ashes from New Delhi. At the airport here, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath, his deputies Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma were present to receive the ashes. A special vehicle carrying the ashes will pass through several places enroute to Jhulelal Vatika on the banks of river Gomti. Some of the prominent places from where the procession will pass are Kanpur Road, Alambagh, Mawaiyya, Charbagh Railway Station, Bansmandi crossing, Maharana Pratap crossing, Burlington crossing and then reach the state BJP office.
From the BJP office, the urn will be taken in a procession to Jhulelal Vatika via Lucknow Municipal Corporation, Novelty theatre, Hazratganj police station and Subhash crossing. The strong bond the former Prime Minister shared with the people of Lucknow, which sent him to Lok Sabha five times, was on display as despite continuous rains, huge crowds gathered at different places in the city to pay homage to Vajpayee and bid final farewell. Slogans of 'Atalji amar rahe' and 'jab tak sooraj chaand rahegaa, Atal teraa naam rahegaa' were heard as the crowds paid tributes to Vajpayee. Vajpayee died on August 16 in New Delhi at the age of 93. He was elected to Lok Sabha from Lucknow in 1991, 1996, 1998, 1999 and 2004.
In Chennai, Tamil Nadu chief minister K Palaniswami and DMK working president MK Stalin paid respects to the ashes of the former Prime Minister at the state BJP office here today. Palaniswami, his deputy O Panneerselvam and Stalin, who is also the Leader of Opposition in the Tamil Nadu Assembly, paid floral tributes to the BJP stalwart's ashes. Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) MP Anbumani Ramadoss, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi, former Union ministers Dayanidhi Maran and TR Baalu also paid tributes to Vajpayee's ashes, among others. The ashes of the three-time former Prime Minister will be immersed at six locations in Tamil Nadu -- Chennai, Kanyakumari, Rameswaram, Erode, Srirangam and Madurai -- on August 26.
The urns containing the ashes are kept at the state BJP office, Kamalalayam, for the public to pay homage. On Wednesday, the funerary urn containing Vajpayee's ashes was brought from Delhi by state BJP president Tamilisai Soundararajan and was taken in a procession to Kamalalayam. The BJP had earlier decided that Vajpayee's ashes would be immersed in rivers across the country, starting with the Ganga in Haridwar. The 93-year-old BJP patriarch died in New Delhi on August 16, following a prolonged illness. He was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in the national capital on June 11 with a kidney tract infection, urinary tract infection, low urine output and chest congestion.