Four-member Pakistan delegation to attend last rites of Atal Bihari Vajpayee

Cheryl Sanders
August 17, 2018

"As Foreign Minister, Mr Vajpayee strived to open up ways towards normalisation of relations among neighbouring states and had successfully taken this agenda to the new heights after assuming Office of the Prime Minister", he added.

In another far-reaching impact of that 2000 visit, Prime Minister Vajpayee had described India and the United States as "natural allies" in a speech at a NY think-tank.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee, a diabetes patient, was admitted to AIIMS on June 11 for what doctors had described as a routine check-up. A huge crowd has gathered outside the BJP headquarters where the top party leadership including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, party chief Amit Shah and several union ministers will pay their last respects.

Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Haseena on behalf of her government and the people of Bangladesh expressed the sympathy and condolences to the government of India and family of ex-PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee. He said that Vajpayee was "very clear that now that India was a nuclear power", even though Pakistan was the aggressor and entered Indian territory, "we will not extend the battlefield elsewhere".

"It was Atal Ji's exemplary leadership that set the foundations for a strong, prosperous and inclusive India in the 21st century", Modi said in a tweet.

Vajpayee's public response to the riots reflected his many contradictions.

The body of the BJP veteran has been kept at his official residence - 6A Krishna Menon Marg. Commuters have been advised to use Aurobindo Marg, Safdarjung Road, Mother Teresa Crescent, Park Street, Mandir Marg to travel between north and south Delhi.

The United States on Thursday joined the world in paying tributes to late Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, saying he was among those who "recognized early that India and the USA could develop a partnership" for the benefit of the region and the world.

State mourning for seven days till 22 August. In a statement issued on Thursday, the American Embassy said that the United States grieved with India on the loss of the former Prime Minister. He will be remembered for his enormous contribution to bolstering #USIndia relations & for recognizing us as "natural allies".

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