Karachi, May 6 : A delegation of the Pakistan-India Peoples Forum for Peace and Democracy carried a pot containing the ashes of Indian leader Nirmala Deshpande to Karachi last evening to perform the last rites here.
The Gandhian leader and apostle of peace had passed away in New Delhi last week.
Her friends, followers, devotees and co-workers from South Asia had divided her ashes so they could be immersed in the places she once worked, such as India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka.
In Pakistan, the last rites would be performed at the River Indus. "We have yet not decided the spot and will make a decision after talking to her friends and co-workers in Pakistan," the Daily Times quoted Karamat Ali, a renowned peace worker and representative of the forum.
Deshpande was best known for her efforts to promote the Gandhian ideology, reduce communal violence and launch peace between India and Pakistan. Pakistan India Forum members Karamat Ali and B.M. Kutty left for New Delhi on the same day to participate in her cremation. "Hundreds of people who knew her from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Nepal and India attended her cremation and they demanded a part of her ashes to take to their countries to express their love for her," said Kutty.
People from all religions attended the ceremony. "There were Hindu pundits, Islamic clerics, Buddhist monks and religious leaders of the Sikhs who performed their religious rites in their own way," Kutty said and added: "They all gathered because she belonged to everybody in South Asia without any discrimination of race, religion or ethnicity, the real Gandhian values."