Leaders pay tribute to Shekhawat

Advani, Swaraj and Gadkari visited civil line area residence of the 87-year-old Sekhawat, who died of cardiac arrest here yesterday, to pay him last respects.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot his Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh counterparts Narendra Modi and Shivraj Singh Chouhan and former BJP chief Rajnath Singh joined them in paying homage to Sekhawat.

Union ministers C P Joshi, Namo Narayan Meena and Mahadev Singh Khandela, NCW Chairperson Girija Vyas, Rajya Sabha MP Najma Heptullah and former Rajasthan CM and BJP General Secretary Vasundhar Raje also paid tributes to the departed leader, who served as CM of Rajasthan thrice.

Later, Sekhawat's body was taken to the party office at Sardar Patel marg, in a procession where scores of party workers paid homage to him.From party office, the body of the departed leader finally headed for Vidhyadhar nagar, about 15 km from his house, on a military truck, where funeral will take place with full state honours.Thousand of people lined up on the road along the final procession of "Babo Sa", the rockfeller of Rajasthan Bhairon Singh Shekhawat's, to pay tributes to him.Despite it being Sunday and shops being closed, people stood on the roads in large numbers to catch  last glimpse of the departed leader.

The body of Sekhawat was placed on a bedecked military truck with close relatives and priests on board.The 15-km long last journey of the departed leader would pass through Panch-Batti, Ajmeri Gate, Sanganeri Gate, Johri Bajar, Bari Chaupar, Chanpole Gate, Jhotwara Raod, Chomu Pulia, Sikar road before reaching Vidhyadhar Nagar stadium where the funeral will take place.

The Congress government in the state has announced building of a memorial after Shekhwat's name there.Jaipur Development Authority has allocated 5600 sq metre of land (about 2.50 beegha) in Vidhaydhar Nagar area for erecting "Shekhawat smarak (memorial)", the site of the cremation, an official said.

Vice-President Mohammed Hamid Ansari, former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, BJP leaders L K Advani, Nitin Gadkari, Arun Jaitley, Narendra Modi, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank and Sushma Swaraj are in the town to attend the funeral.

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