The funeral of Union Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave, who passed away on Thursday following a cardiac arrest, was held on Friday on the banks of Narmada river in Bandrabhan in Hoshangabad district of Madhya Pradesh.
Dave, in a will which he had written on July 23, 2012, had said that his body should be cremated in Bandrabhan on the Narmada river. Bandrabhan is place where the late Union environment minister used to organise the International River Festival every two years. His funeral pyre was lit by his his brother and nephew amid the presence of several leaders.
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Union ministers Harsh Vardhan, Uma Bharti, Anant Kumar, Narendra Singh Tomar and Thawar Chand Gehlot, senior RSS leaders Bhaiyyaji Joshi, Dattatraya Hosbole and Suresh Soni, BJP general secretary Kailash Vijaywargiya among others were present on the occasion.
Chouhan and other BJP leaders lent their shoulders to the departed leader. A guard of honour was also given as a mark of respect him.
Dave’s body was brought to Bhopal from Delhi on Thursday evening in an Indian Air Force plane. Following that it was taken to the BJP state headquarters where people and party workers paid their last respects to the leader. Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and other party leaders were present at the city airport to receive his body draped in a tricolour.
His funeral was performed with full state honours. Madhya Pradesh government has also declared a two-day state mourning following Dave’s death.
Born in Madhya Pradesh on July 6, 1956, Anil Dave held several posts. An MP representing Madhya Pradesh, Dave took charge as Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change (Independent Charge), on July 6, 2016, following a reshuffle in the Narendra Modi Cabinet.
Dave was was known for his work on the conservation of the Narmada river in Madhya Pradesh, his home state. He had also founded the ‘Narmada Samagra’ organisation that worked towards the same goal. Anil Dave was also an author having authored several books on various subjects including environment and climate change.