Sushma Swaraj cremated with full state honours

Irreparable loss: Sushma Swaraj’s husband Swaraj Kaushal and daughter Bansuri, centre, at the BJP headquarters in New Delhi on Wednesday.

Irreparable loss: Sushma Swaraj’s husband Swaraj Kaushal and daughter Bansuri, centre, at the BJP headquarters in New Delhi on Wednesday.   | Photo Credit: Arun Sharma

Tributes pour in from diplomatic community, world capitals.

Tributes poured in from the diplomatic community and world capitals for former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, who was cremated here with full state honours.

The series of condolences were led by the Ministry of External Affairs that she exited in May.


“Enjoying immense respect within the Ministry and outside, for her compassionate and amiable personality, she has left a lasting legacy for putting people at the core of Indian diplomacy,” said the Ministry of External Affairs in a statement.

The United States, Japan, Bangladesh, and Bhutan were among the countries that condoled the passing away of Ms. Swaraj, who had a distinguished public life spanning more than four decades. “Saddened to hear of the passing of my friend and former Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. She was a strong partner who shared our view that a more democratic world is a more peaceful one,” said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a message. Earlier taking to the social media, the US ambassador Ken Juster said, Ms Swaraj will be “greatly missed”.

Similar tributes came from the envoy of Bangladesh who conveyed the condolences from Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and placed a wreath on the mortal remains of Ms Swaraj who passed away after a massive cardiac arrest on late Wednesday evening. Japanese Ambassador Hiramatsu also conveyed condolence from the people and government of Japan on the passing away of the former minister of external affairs.

In a message to the current External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar Russian Ambassador Nikalay Kudashev expressed Moscow’s condolences, and described the departed leader as a “steadfast defender and promoter of international interests of India”.

Sushma Swaraj funeral | Key updates

Dean of the diplomatic community of Delhi Hans Dannenberg Castellanos, Dean of Diplomatic Corp and Ambassador of the Dominican Republic also expressed condolences and said that Ms Swaraj strengthened ties between India and the world.

Sushma Swaraj was cremated at the Lodhi Road crematorium in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, her former cabinet colleagues, veteran leader LK Advani and her family members. The funeral was also attended by former Prime Minister of Bhutan Tshering Tobgay. In Bhutan a special Buddhist prayer was hosted by King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk.

"Come for your Re. 1 fee," said Sushma Swaraj to Harish Salve an hour before her death

“Shrimati Sushma Swaraj served as Minister of External Affairs of India from 2014- 2019 and worked closely with Bhutan. Throughout her tenure, Her Excellency has been a friend of Bhutan, and contributed to strengthening the relations between our two countries. She was well loved, as an exemplary leader embodying grace, dignity, and strength” said the Government of Bhutan in its message. As part of the ceremony 1000 butter lamps were lit in memory of the departed soul.

Dr Devi Prasad Tripathi, former colleague of Ms Swaraj at the Consultative Committee on External Affairs in the Parliament also paid tribute to Ms Swaraj and said that as minister she was always open to suggestions from the political opposition. “This was one of the reasons for her cross party appeal,” said Dr Tripathi recounting that Ms Swaraj remained an idealist during her career.

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Printable version | Jun 27, 2020 11:58:48 AM |

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