President, PM pay rich tributes to Atal Bihari Vajpayee on death anniversary
Atal Bihari Vajpayee had served as India's PM for a brief period in 1996, between 1998 and 1999, and then for a full term between 1999 and 2004.
President Droupadi Murmu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and union ministers on Tuesday paid rich respects to former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee on his fourth death anniversary in Delhi. Atal Bihari Vajpayee - remembered as "a man of the masses" - was India's prime minister for three terms.
The leaders were seen paying floral tributes at Sadaiv Atal, AB Vajpayee's memorial in the national capital. Apart from PM Modi, union ministers Rajnath Singh and Amit Shah also paid tributes to the former PM and the BJP veteran. Vajpayee had died in 2018 after a spell of illness. Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar also offered early morning respects at the memorial.
The BJP veteran's "first brush with nationalist politics was in his student days, when he joined the Quit India Movement of 1942 which hastened the end of British colonial rule," according to his profile on the government website on India's prime ministers. "Over the decades, he emerged as a leader who commanded respect for his liberal worldview and commitment to democratic ideals," it says, remembering the leader as "an ardent champion of women’s empowerment and social equality."
He had served as India's PM for a brief period in 1996, between 1998 and 1999, and then for a full term between 1999 and 2004.
Among others who remembered Vajpayee was Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath. “Humble tribute to the popular mass leader, ardent patriot, dynamic speaker, inspiration of innumerable workers, former Prime Minister, 'Bharat Ratna' revered Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji on his death anniversary! Your pure political and public life will always be the ideal standard for democracy,” he wrote on Twitter.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal also paid tributes. "My tributes to former Prime Minister Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji on his death anniversary," he tweeted.
In 2015, Vajpayee was also conferred the Bharat Ratna - India's top civilian honour. He was also an eloquent speaker and prolific writer. He is also remembered for his poems - most of which he authored in Hindi Vajpayee breathed his last on August 16, 2018, after being hospitalized in June following a kidney infection.