Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Monday (April 20) said he would not attend his father’s funeral as he had to be present in the state during the fight against COVID-19.
Anand Bisht (89) died at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi on April 20. He was admitted to the AIIMS after his health deteriorated and was undergoing treatment at the gastroenterology department.
Bisht’s last rites are set to take place in Haridwar in Uttarakhand on April 21, Media Advisor to the chief minister Mrityunjay Kumar said. Bisht hailed from a village in Pauri district of Uttarakhand.
Adityanath, in a statement, said, “I had the ardent wish to get a glimpse of him at the final moment. However, following a sense of duty towards the state’s 23 crore people during the COVID-19 pandemic, I could not do so.”
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“For the success of the lockdown and the strategy to defeat the novel coronavirus pandemic, I will be unable to attend the last rites on April 21,” he added. “I am deeply saddened by the demise of my respected father. He instilled in me the values of honesty, hardwork and selfless service for public welfare in childhood itself,” he said.
Even as news of his father’s demise reached Adityanath, he continued with a meeting with officials, whom he directed to ensure that the students of Uttar Pradesh who have returned from coaching hub Kota are quarantined at their homes.
Meanwhile, the Chief Minister and the Governor Uttarakhand condoled the death of Bisht. “Stricken with grief over the death of Yogi Ji’s father. Whenever I met him during his treatment he wore a smile and never let me feel he would leave so early,” Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said.
Governor Baby Rani Maurya also expressed grief at his death and prayed for peace to the departed soul. Condoling Bisht’s death, former Uttarakhand Chief Minister and Congress leader Harish Rawat said he was shocked to hear of his sudden demise. He had dedicated his life to social service after retirement, he said.