Bugles sounded the last post, uniformed soldiers clicked their heels and a sombre silence fell over the crowd as former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's mortal remains were consigned to the flames on Friday evening, the sun setting on the life of a poet-politician who combined accommodative politics with graciousness.
Among others to attend the last rites of Vajpayee, who passed away on Thursday after a prolonged illness, was Nepal's foreign minister Pradeep Kumar Gyawali, Sri Lanka's acting foreign minister Lakshman Kiriella, Afghanistan's deputy foreign minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai and Pakistan's information minister Syed Ali Zafar, according to the Indian foreign ministry. "He will be remembered for his vast contribution in bolstering U.S. -India relations".
People spilled over barricades and jostled to get a glimpse of the former prime minister.
"Today, our two countries and our bilateral relationship continue to benefit from Prime Minister Vajpayee's vision, which helped promote expanded cooperation", Pompeo said.
The country observed a seven-day state mourning as a mark of respect for the leader who was decorated with Bharat Ratna and was very popular.
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Khan said that Vajpayee started efforts for improving Indo-Pak ties and continued them after becoming prime minister.
In the financial capital Mumbai, the main opposition Congress Party hung large posters from buildings bearing Vajpayee's commanding profile and a message of tribute to the late leader.
The Royal Government and people of Bhutan stand in solidarity with the people of India at this hour of grief.
"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.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee, one of India's most charismatic leaders who led the nation through several crises and held together a tenuous coalition with his inclusive politics, died on Aug 16 in New Delhi.