Rajiv Gandhi, the architect of modern India

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New Delhi, May 21: The nation today remembered its youngest Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi who was assassinated on this day in 1991 by a woman LTTE suicide bomber while campaigning for the general elections in Tamil Nadu.

President Pratibha Patil, Vice President Mohd Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi led the nation in paying homage to the architect of IT revolution and modern development in India at his samadhi Vir Bhoomi. Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Vadra also paid respects to their father at Vir Bhoomi. Several Union Ministers including Shivraj Patil and A K Antony were present on the occasion.

Coming a day prior to the beginning of the final year of the UPA government in office, this day assumes special significance and is being observed as 'Anti-Terrorism Day'.

The Mahila Congress organised a blood donation camp at the AICC headquarters here.

Undeterred by incessant rains, a large number of party workers and people from all walks of life came out to pay tributes at the samadhi.

The Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) organised a function at Rajiv Bhawan here where thousands of Congress workers and senior Party leaders paid homage to the late leader.

Speaking on the occasion, DPCC president Jai Prakash Agarwal, MP, said Rajiv Gandhi will always be remembered for bringing computer revolution in the country, giving voting rights to those of 18 years and 33 per cent reservation for women through the Panchayati Raj.

Tamil Nadu also remembered the late leader by paying floral tributes to him. Chief Minister M Karunanidhi led the State in offering floral tributes to the late leader at the State Secretariat. He also administered the anti-terrorism pledge to State Ministers and officials to mark the occasion.

Governor Surjeet Singh Barnala administered the anti-terrorism pledge to the staff of Raj Bhavan here, according to a statement from Raj Bhavan.

At Rajiv Gandhi's memorial in Sriperumbudur, where he was felled by a LTTE woman suicide bomber during an election meeting on this day in 1991, TNCC President M Krishnasamy, AICC Secretary Krishnamurthy and a host of Congress leaders showered rose petals on a portrait of the former Prime Minister.

In Puducherry, Chief Minister N Rangasamy, his cabinet colleagues garlanded the statue of Rajiv Gandhi at Ellaipillaichavady.

The Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) paid floral tributes to late former Prime Minister.

Congress Working Committee member and in-charge of Andhra Pradesh affairs M Veerappa Moily garlanded the statue of Rajiv Gandhi at Somajiguda and at the Gandhi Bhavan.

Rich tributes were paid to the late Prime Minister in Himachal Pradesh at 'Sadbhawana Chowk'.

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad termed the killing of Rajiv Gandhi as ''severe setback'' to the society caused by terrorists by killing great leaders.

Glowing tributes were paid across Madhya Pradesh to former Prime Minister, where Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan offered tributes to him after laying the foundation stone for the new building of the police headquarters here.

A seminar on the messages of Rajiv Gandhi was organised at the Congress headquarter, Sadaquat Ashram in Bihar and tributes were paid to the departed leader at the Congress office.

The Day was observed as anti-terrorism day in Manipur where state government officials participated in a programme at the Imphal Secretariat where State Law Minister Th Debendra took the anti-terrorism oath.

People across Jharkhand also marked the death anniversary of Rajiv Gandhi.

The Maharashtra Congress paid homage to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi with Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee President Prabha Rau paying rich tributes to the late leader.

Ms Rau said Rajiv Gandhi was a visionary who dreamt of making India a leader in the 21st century and that the country will never forget his farsighted leadership.

UNI

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