The mortal remains of former external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj were consigned to flames on Wednesday. Earlier, Sushma’s daughter Bansuri and husband Swaraj Kaushal gave her a tearful farewell. Bansuri also performed the last rites. The funeral was accorded full state honours.
The body of the former minister, wrapped in a Tricolour, was brought to the crematorium in the afternoon from the BJP headquarters, where it was kept for a few hours for people to pay their respects. The prime minister was seen comforting her husband and daughter.
Politicians of all hues visited the deceased leader’s residence in the morning, including Sonia Gandhi and LK Advani's daughter Pratibha. PM Modi was seen holding L K Advani by hand in a heart-rending moment.
Sushma and Swaraj had met as young law students; they had been married for nearly 47 years. A Supreme Court advocate, Swaraj Kaushal also served as the Governor of Mizoram in the 1990s.
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut paid tributes to Swaraj and recalled that she was Bal Thackeray's first choice as the prime ministerial contender, when current Prime Minister Narendra Modi had still not emerged on the national scene and was active in Gujarat politics.
"Balasaheb saw her as a firm leader. She had thanked him for blessing her. Such was their relationship," Raut told a regional news channel.