The Centre has announced a 7-day State Mourning as a mark of respect to former president Pranab Mukherjee, who died this evening. During this period, the national flag will be flown at half-mast across India and there will be no official entertainment.
“During the period of state mourning, the national flag will fly at half-mast on all buildings throughout India, where it is flown regularly, and there will be no official entertainment,” the government said in a statement.
The former president of India, who passed away at the Army Research and Referral Hospital in New Delhi at the age of 84, will be accorded with a state funeral with full honours.
The date, time and venue of the state funeral will be intimated later, the government statement said.
Mr Mukherjee, who had tested positive for coronavirus, had been in coma after a brain surgery earlier this month.
His son and former Member of Parliament Abhijit Mukherjee informed about his death in a tweet.
“With a Heavy Heart , this is to inform you that my father Shri Pranab Mukherjee has just passed away inspite of the best efforts of Doctors of RR Hospital & prayers ,duas & prarthanas from people throughout India ! I thank all of You,” he said.
Political leaders cutting across party lines expressed their sorrow over the death of Mr Mukherjee. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was among the first to pay tribute, saying he was blessed to have Pranab Mukherjee’s guidance since he took office.
Mr Mukherjee was admitted to hospital on August 10 and had surgery the same day for the removal of a clot in the brain. He had tested positive for COVID-19 in the hospital. “On a visit to the hospital for a separate procedure, I have tested positive for COVID-19 today. I request the people who came in contact with me in the last week, to please self-isolate and get tested for COVID-19,” he had posted.