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Atal Bihari Vajpayee an Inspiration for India, Praying for Him: Lalji Tandon

As per the latest medical bulletin from AIIMS, former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee continues to be critical and on life support.

Qazi Faraz Ahmad | News18@qazifarazahmad

Updated:August 16, 2018, 11:47 AM IST
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Atal Bihari Vajpayee an Inspiration for India, Praying for Him: Lalji Tandon
File photo of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. (Reuters)
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Lucknow: Praying for ailing former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, senior BJP leader and former Lucknow MP Lalji Tandon hailed the party stalwart as an “inspiration to the entire nation”.

Speaking to News18, Tandon said, “Just like millions of people in India, I am also praying for Atalji. The news about his health condition getting critical makes the entire country worried. His condition has not been well for the last two or three days. I pray to God for his better health. It is difficult to comment on anything just now, we all are waiting for the medical bulletin regarding his health.”

“Unlike others, Atalji is a great inspiration for the entire nation. As Lucknow is also called his home and he has been elected many times from this city, people of Lucknow are attached to him. His lines chhote mann se koi bada nahi hota, toote tan se koi khada nahi hota define his persona. People from all walks of life irrespective of political affiliation address him with respect,’ said an emotional Tandon.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee had campaigned for Lalji Tandon in early 1960s when the latter was contesting for the post of Corporator from Chowk area of the city. Tandon was introduced to Vajpayee by the third Mayor of Lucknow Dr PD Kapoor. Atal Bihari Vajpayee had ensured Tandon’s victory by campaigning extensively for Tandon then. Tandon, who was considered close to Vajpayee, was made BJP’s official candidate for Lok Sabha after Atal Bihari Vajpayee fell ill and was hospitalised in the year 2009.

The condition of Atal Bihari Vajpayee remains critical and he continues to be on advanced life-support system. The 93-year-old BJP veteran was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) here on June 11 with a kidney tract infection, urinary tract infection, low urine output and chest congestion.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the AIIMS yesterday evening to enquire about the condition of Vajpayee. Modi reached the hospital at around 7.15 pm and spent about 50 minutes there.

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu visited AIIMS this morning to enquire about the condition of the former prime minister. BJP veteran L K Advani was also at the hospital to enquire about the health of Vajpayee.

BJP chief Amit Shah, Union Health Minister J P Nadda, were also at AIIMS, while Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, and Union ministers Prakash Javadekar are expected to visit the premier medical institute soon.

After Modi, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal and BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi also paid a visit. Delhi BJP President Manoj Tiwari was among those who visited the hospital.

Later in the night, several leaders and ministers including Suresh Prabhu, Jitendra Singh, Harsh Vardhan and Shahnawaz Hussain visited the hospital.

Earlier, Union Textiles Minister Smriti Irani had visited the hospital to check on Vajpayee.

A large crowd of mediapersons and others has gathered outside the hospital to get updates on Vajpayee's heath, affecting movement of traffic on the road.

Policemen have been deployed to manage the crowd and traffic outside the hospital.

Vajpayee, a diabetic, has only one functional kidney. He had suffered a stroke in 2009 that weakened his cognitive abilities. Subsequently, he developed dementia.
| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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