Vajpayee’s ashes arrive in Lucknow

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Lucknow, Aug 23 (IANS) Ashes of late Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Thursday arrived in the Uttar Pradesh state capital, which was his parliamentary constituency between 1991-2009.

The ashes, kept in an urn wrapped in a red cloth, was brought in a special Indian Air Force (IAF) plane, escorted by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who is currently the Lok Sabha MP from Lucknow.

The ashes were also accompanied by the former leader’s foster daughter Namita, her husband Ranjan Bhattacharya and grand-daughter Niharika.

State Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Mahendra Nath Pandey and Union Minister Manoj Sinha were also on the flight.

Amid torrential rain, Governor Ram Naik, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Assembly Speaker Hriday Narayan Dixit received the urn.

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A police band played in the background as leaders from different political parties paid tributes to Vajpayee.

The ashes will be taken to the Jhule Lal park on the banks of the Gomti river and then taken in a procession through the city, allowing people to pay their last respects to the veteran BJP leader.

–IANS

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