Bush, wife Laura pay homage to Father of Nation
New Delhi, Mar 2: United States (US) President George Bush and his wife Laura paid homage to the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi at Rajghat today (Mar 2, 2006), reprising his father and former US President George Bush Sr's visit here over two decades ago.
Immediately after the ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, President Bush and his wife drove straight to Rajghat amid heavy security.
At Rajghat, Mr Bush and his wife laid a wreath on the 'samadhi' of the Mahatma. Thereafter, they paid floral tributes to the Father of the Nation.
They were accompanied by Gandhian, Nirmala Deshpande.
During his visit to Rajghat in 1984, Bush Sr had planted a mango sapling, which has since grown into a big tree on which hangs a plate earmarking the date on which the then US President had planted it.
Ever since it was known that Bush Jr will visit the monument, several gardeners have been entrusted with the task of taking care of the mango tree.
Prior to the US President's visit, the complex had been spruced up. Several workers and gardeners have been engaged in the past few days to beautify the 1,000-acre lawn and flora at Mahatma Gandhi's samadhi.
Tight security arrangements had been made in and around Rajghat for the visit of the US President. The security measures being carried out included shutting down the Rajghat complex for visitors for 72 hours prior to Bush Jr's visit.