On the first death anniversary of Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Friday, President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah were among leaders who paid tribute to the former Prime Minister at his memorial, Sadaiv Atal in New Delhi.
Remembering Vajpayee, Modi in a tweet said, “his (Atal Bihari Vajpayee) thoughts and words live on. We will always cherish his contribution to India’s development.”
Remembering Atal Ji on his Punya Tithi. His thoughts and words live on. We will always cherish his contribution to India’s development.
Paid tributes to Atal Ji at Sadaiv Atal this morning. pic.twitter.com/RRZFnlcfTT
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 16, 2019
A prayer meeting was held at Sadaiv Atal–the memorial to Vajpayee to mark his death anniversary. The memorial was dedicated to the nation in December last year. The central samadhi platform comprises nine square black polished granite stone blocks, capped with a “diya” in the centre.
See pictures | Vajpayee death anniversary
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh paid tribute to Vajpayee in Pokhran. He said, ” It is a coincidence that today I came for International Army Scout Masters Competition in Jaisalmer & today it is the first death anniversary of #AtalBihariVajpayee. So, I felt I should pay tribute to him on the land of Pokhran only.”
Nuclear Test was conducted in May 1998 in Pokhran when Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who had served as the railway minister in Vajpayee-led cabinet, urged people to bear in mind his principles of ‘insaniyat (humanism), jamhooriyat (democracy) and kashmiriyat (inclusive Kashmiri culture)’.
The BJP stalwart died at the age of 93 on August 16, 2018, at AIIMS hospital in New Delhi following a prolonged illness.
Often described as a “right man in the wrong party” for his moderate views, Vajpayee was the first non-Congress Prime Minister to complete a full term in office. After he lost a vote of confidence in 1999, he was re-elected with a larger majority in the general elections that followed, a first in India’s history.
Vajpayee was born on December 25, 1924, and joined the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) as a teenager in 1939, and became a full-time worker in 1947.