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Khandu's last rites to be performed in Tawang today


May 6, 2011 - Itanagar

Late Arunachal Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu's last rites will be performed at his native place Tawang today with full state honours as per Monpa Buddhist traditions.

According to traditional practice, lamas usually prescribe the procedures for the last rites on the basis of good or bad deeds of a deceased, a close aide of Khandu and Sahitya Akademi awardee Yeshi Dorjee Thongchi, said.

"Khandu was against the Monpa practice of throwing a body into the river as he was a great advocate of clean and green environment. A final decision, however, would be taken by the family members after consultation with Buddhist lamas," he added.

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi will visit Itanagar to pay their last respects to the late leader.

All Central Government offices in the State will remain closed today.

The Arunachal Government has announced seven-days State mourning as a mark of respect to the late leader. Assam Government has also announced a three-day state mourning.

A black-border obituary notification will be published in the Gazette of India Extraordinary.

After four days of intensive search by over 3,000 security forces, the wreckage of the chopper was located at Kyela on Wednesday.

The missing Pawan Hans AS350 B-3 helicopter that took off from Tawang at 9.50 a.m. on Saturday lost communication with the ground after it flew past the Sela Pass along the Chinese border about 20 to 25 minutes later. The helicopter was scheduled to land in Itanagar at 11.30 a.m. on Saturday.

Apart from Khandu, the people on board included crew members Captain J S Babbar and Captain K S Malick, Khandu's security officer Yeshi Choddak and Yeshi Lamu, sister of Tawang legislator Tsewang Dhondup.

ANI

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