BHUBANESWAR:People from all walks of life, including his supporters, leaders from Opposition parties, academics, journalists and students bade a tearful adieu to former chief minister J B Patnaik.
The last rites of the Congress veteran were performed at Swargadwar, Puri with full State honours on Wednesday. His son Prithvi Ballav lit the funeral pyre.
Several dignitaries, including senior Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad, B K Hariprasad, Leader of Opposition Narasingh Mishra, PCC president Prasad Harichandan, Niranjan Patnaik, Suresh Routray and Pradip Majhi were present.
The State Government was represented by ministers Debi Prasad Mishra and Pradip Maharathy and Puri MLA Maheswar Mohanty.
Earlier, JB’s body was taken out in a procession from his Forest Park residence here at 11 am. As scheduled, his body was taken to Congress Bhawan where the party workers and leaders from across the State paid their last respects.
After a brief halt at the State Congress headquarters, the vehicle carrying his body proceeded to Assembly where Speaker Niranjan Pujari, several BJD legislators, including Forest and Environment Minister Bikram Keshari Arukha, former minister S N Patro, Ranendra Pratap Swain, Government chief whip Anant Das, Ramesh Chandra Chyau Patnaik and Purna Chandra Sethy paid homage.
From Assembly, the body of the Congress leader was taken to his native village Rameswar near Khruda and later to Puri through the newly developed Jagannath Sadak, a brainchild of JB.
Earlier, Ghulam Nabi Azad, B K Hariprasad and AICC member in-charge of Odisha Subhankar Sarkar visited JB’s house to pay their tributes.
Azad met Jayanti Patnaik, wife of the departed leader, and handed over the condolence message of Congress president Sonia Gandhi. Describing JB as an astute politician, a scholar and a great litterateur, Azad said his death is a great loss to the party.
End of Journey