'Vapayee a messenger of peace, a saviour during nation's crisis'



West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi on Wednesday hailed former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee as one of the greatest national leaders who symbolised peace and transparency but never hesitated to take a strong step whenever the nation was under threat.

"I have seen Vajpayee-ji in various roles. We have seen him as a poet, a politician and also as one of the best national leaders of the country. He was a messenger of peace who helped India grow economically and spiritually during his reign as the prime minister," Tripathi said at the state BJP organised all party condolence meet for Vajpayee here.

"But whenever there was any threat to the country, he never fumbled to take strong actions. The Kargil war was a bright example. The way he took key decisions at the time of crisis and inspired the Indian army to fight the war that history was created in the battlefield," he noted.

The meeting, organised at central Kolkata's Mahajati's Sadan, was attended by the West Bengal Minister of State for Information & Cultural Affairs and Tourism Indranil Sen, Meghalaya Governor Tathagata Roy, senior diplomats from Japan, Denmark and Nepal as well as senior state BJP leaders.

However, none of the leaders from other major political outfits from Bengal including the ruling Trinamool Congress, Congress and the left parties turned up at the programme despite the saffron outfit's invitation.

Referring to the BJP coalition government's defeat in a confidence vote in the Lok Sabha in 1999 by falling short of a single vote due to the withdrawal of one of the government's coalition partners AIADMK, Tripathi said Vajpayee was a symbol of transparency and never encourage horse trading.

Roy hailed Vajpayee for his role in the country's first underground nuclear weapon detonation in Rajasthan's Pokhran in 1998 and said conducting the tests successfully despite adverse pressures from foreign countries proved the leader's determination and elevated the country's image as a super power.

Stating Vajpayee's depth as a politician as well as a human being was immeasurable, West Bengal BJP President Dilip Ghosh termed Prime Minister Narendra Modi is his true successor as he is working with the same philosophy to finish Vajpayee's unfinished works.

"Narendra Modi is the true successor of Vajpayee ji. He is working in the path shown by the great leader and has even succeeded to surpass him in certain aspects. In the Kargil war, Vajpayee ji took the fight to the enemy till the border but Modi ji conducted operation inside the enemy territory," Ghosh said referring to Indian army's surgical strike inside the Pakistan territory in 2017.

BJP National General Secretary and party's observer for West Bengal Kailash Vijayvargiya termed Vajpayee as a politician, unparalleled in the nation's history. He said Vajpayee shared unique personal bonds even with general party activists that made him equally popular and acceptable among all.- IANS