Pranab saddened at loss of ‘friend’
Published: 2013-03-21 06:21:40.0 BdST Updated: 2013-03-21 06:21:40.0 BdST
Indian President Pranab Mukherjee has expressed his ‘profound sadness’ at the death of his ‘friend’, President Md Zillur Rahman.
In a condolence message addressed to his son Nazmul Hassan, the President said his demise is a ‘personal loss’ to him.
He recalled Rahman’s role in Bangladesh’s democracy and the strengthening relations between the two neighbours.
“I learned with profound sadness, of the passing away of your respected father, His Excellency, President Zillur Rahman.
“A statesman and visionary, President Zillur Rahman played a pivotal role in the consolidation of democracy in independent Bangladesh.
“He was a true friend of India and was personally committed to strengthening bilateral relations between India and Bangladesh. I had the privilege of knowing him as a friend,” the statement signed by the President read.
Pranab recalled his recent visit to Bangladesh and said: “…my wife and I had the honour of meeting him and receiving his warm and exceptional hospitality. His demise is a personal loss to us.”
“We offer you, your sisters and the other family members of President Zillur Rahman our heartfelt condolences and stand by you in this hour of grief. Our thoughts and prayers are with you,” it read.
President Rahman died on Wednesday at a Singapore hospital at the age of 84 ending a historic chapter of his colourful life.
A veteran politician, Rahman was Awami League Presidium Member before being elected uncontested as the country's 19th President on Feb 12, 2009.
Born on Mar 9, 1929 at Bhairab Upazila in Kishoreganj, Rahman took to politics during his student days.
He played a significant role in the historic Language Movement in 1952 and the country’s Liberation War in 1971.
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