Himachal Pradesh: Virbhadra Singh cremated with full state honours

SHIMLA, Jul 10: Former Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh was cremated with full state honours at a royal crematorium in Jogni Bagh near Shimla’s Rampur on Saturday afternoon.

His son Vikramaditya Singh performed the last rites around 4.30 pm. A police contingent gave the guard of honour and gun salute to the former chief minister. Thousands of his well-wishers gathered at the crematorium to bid adieu to the leader.

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, Urban Development Minister Suresh Bhardwaj and Forest Minister Rakesh Pathania also attended the last rites. A delegation of Congress leaders represented party president Sonia Gandhi at his cremation on Saturday. The delegation comprised Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel and Congress treasurer Pawan Kumar Bansal.

Earlier before the cremation, his son Vikramaditya Singh’s “coronation” as the “king” of Rampur Bushahr took place in the morning.

Remembering Virbhadra Singh, Chief Minister Thakur said he contributed immensely for the development of Himachal Pradesh and welfare of its people during his long political career spanning over six decades.

Virbhadra Singh will always be remembered by people of the state for his contribution, he added.

Meanwhile in a tweet, AICC secretary incharge for Himachal Pradesh Sanjay Dutt said, “Final farewell to our veteran leader Resp #VirbhadraSingh Ji, with tears in our eyes & resolve in our hearts that we shall unitedly strive to fulfill his dream of restoring old glory & progress of #Himachal, by bringing back #Congress Govt in the State. Raja Sahab Amar Rahe.”

Earlier the body was kept at Rampur’s Padam Palace from 8 am to 2 pm before the funeral. His body was taken to the crematorium at 2.45 pm.

The 87-year-old veteran Congress leader breathed his last after prolonged illness at Shimla’s Indira Gandhi Medical College (IGMC) on Thursday.  (PTI)