Veteran Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee who turned 89 on Wednesday was greeted by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and a galaxy of top BJP leaders.
Dr. Singh was among the first to reach Mr. Vajpayee’s residence at Krishna Menon Marg and spent nearly 20 minutes with him.
Former Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, BJP president Rajnath Singh, party’s prime ministerial candidate and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Ministers of Rajasthan Vasundhara Raje Scindia and her counterpart from Madhya Pradesh Shivraj Singh Chouhan also greeted Mr. Vajpayee.
Mr. Vajpayee, who had steered the BJP-led coalition government of the National Democratic Alliance as its Prime Minister till 2004 when the United Progressive Alliance government came to power, has been ailing for quite some time. He has not been seen in public over the past few years and is confined to his official residence.
The party launched a signature campaign for Mr. Vajpayee’s long life and good health while the BJP youth wing unveiled a literacy initiative under which study kits were distributed amongst under-privileged children.