'Close friend', 'pioneer': Condolences pour in from around the world on death of General Rawat | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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'Close friend', 'pioneer': Condolences pour in from around the world on death of General Rawat

Dec 09, 2021 06:44 AM IST

A chopper with General Rawat, his wife Madhulika and 12 other people on board crashed near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday afternoon. The crash resulted in the deaths of 13 people including General Rawat and his wife.

Condolences poured from across the world as various world leaders mourned the tragic demise of India's first Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat in a helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu.

General Bipin Rawat.(PTI)
General Bipin Rawat.(PTI)

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin III on Wednesday (local time) said that they are "deeply saddened by this loss" and extended prayers to the bereaved family. "I and the Department extend our deepest condolences to the Rawat family, the Indian military, and the people of India after the tragic passing of Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat in a helicopter crash," said the senior US official.

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United Nations's chief Antonio Guterres also expressed his "heartfelt condolences" on the loss, his spokesperson Stephane Dujarric informed on Wednesday. He also remembered General Rawat's work with the United Nations as Brigade Commander of the North Kivu Brigade of the UN peacekeeping mission in the Congo (MONUC) in 2008 and 2009.

The UN chief expresses his heartfelt condolences to the families of the deceased and to the people and Government of India, Dujarric told reporters in New York. “As you may recall, General Rawat served the United Nations with distinction and we fully appreciated that work," Dujarric added.

Taking to Twitter to mourn the loss, Russian Envoy to India Nikolay Kudashev said, his country has lost a very "close friend". "Russia has lost a very close friend, who played a big role in promotion of our bilateral special and privileged strategic partnership. Grieving together with India. Goodbye, friend! Farewell, commander!" he tweeted.

British High Commissioner Alex Ellis also tweeted his condolences and said, "Gen Rawat was a wise man, a brave soldier, a pioneer and a generous host to me only weeks ago. We mourn his death and that of his wife, and all killed in this terrible accident."

Meanwhile, remembering General Rawat, Australian High Commissioner to India Barry O'Farrell said "Australia-India relationship thrived during his tenure," according to news agency PTI.

A chopper with General Rawat, his wife Madhulika and 12 other people on board crashed near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday afternoon. The crash resulted in the deaths of 13 people including General Rawat and his wife. The lone survivor, group captain Varun Singh, is currently under treatment at a military hospital in Wellington, the Indian Air Force said.

His mortal remains will reach Delhi on Thursday. On Friday his last rites will be done at Delhi Cantonment.

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