Emotions ran high for hours as thousands of people attended the funeral of CRPF constable Ashwini Kachhi, who was cremated at Khudawal village, near Sihora in Jabalpur district, on Saturday.
Carrying the Tricolor and raising anti-Pakistan slogans, people offered tributes to the 28-year-old, whose coffin was brought to the village by road from Uttar Pradesh in the afternoon.
Ashwini, youngest among five siblings, was the “first person in the family to get a government job”, relatives said. His father once worked as a daily wager and his mother rolled beedis to support the family. The family was looking for a match for Ashwani, who joined the force in 2017. Ashwini’s eldest brother lit the pyre.
Chief Minister Kamal Nath, who announced Rs 1 crore assistance, a house and a job for a family member, visited the family and consoled the family along with two cabinet ministers. He deputed a senior minister to attend the final journey of the martyr.
The state Cabinet meeting, which had been planned in advance at Jabalpur, began after observing two-minute silence.
Former chief minister and BJP vice-president Shivraj Singh Chouhan was among those who shouted slogans as he attended the last rites along with a host of party leaders, including leader of Opposition Gopal Bhargava.
“I am confident that the Army will hunt down those responsible for the cowardly attack and punish them severely,’’ Chouhan tweeted.
“There were so many people that the funeral got delayed beyond schedule. They had started arriving in advance,’’ Ashwini’s uncle Khadak Singh said.
The BJP alleged that the last rites were delayed because CM Kamal Nath reached the village late. BJP leader Rahul Kothari said slogans were raised denouncing Nath.