INTRODUCTION President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed of India, who died on Friday (11 February) aged 71, was buried with full state honours on sunday (13 February) in the grounds of a small New delhi mosque.
INTRODUCTION President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed of India, who died on Friday (11 February) aged 71, was buried with full state honours on sunday (13 February) in the grounds of a small New delhi mosque. He had prayed there regularly for many years. Representatives from 27 countries attended the service. They included Mrs. Lillian Carter, 78-year-old mother of the President of the United States.
SYNPOSIS: Thousands of people paid tribute to President Ahmed while his body lay in state in the main hall of his official residence, originally built for the British viceroys. India began a 13-day state mourning period when his death was announced.
A massive crowd attended funeral prayers in the gardens of the residence on Sunday. Representatives of Moslem nations were among them.
Senior officers of the three armed forces carried the President's body to a gun carriage decked with flowers, waiting to take him on the final journey to his burial ground.
Prime Minister Mrs. Indira gandhi, waiting for the start of the procession. The body, draped in the Indian flag, was borne past silent crowds in a procession which included troops as well as mourners. President Ahmed, who was born in Delhi on May 13,1905, began his political career in the north eastern state of Assam in 1935. His soft spoken manner belied a vigorous past - he was jailed twice by the British during India's struggle for independence in the 1940's.
President Ahmed was elected to the Presidency in August 1974. for a five-year term. Although the office is a largely ceremonial one, he became a central political figure during the recent Indian state of emergency.
Mrs. Gandhi and acting President D.J. Jatti, former deputy President, stood nearby as President Ahmed's body approached its final resting place at the Jama Masjid mosque, in sight of India's parliament building.