President Abdulla Yameen and the main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) have expressed condolences to Indian leaders following the passing away of former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam.
In separate messages to President Shri Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Yameen “described the late Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam as a close friend of the Maldives, and as one among the most remarkable contemporary leaders,” the president’s office said.
“President Yameen has also highlighted the former president’s invaluable contributions as an academic and as a president.”
Yameen also said Kalam’s legacy as “a leader of firm convictions and profound knowledge will forever live on.”
Kalam’s death was a loss to the South Asian region, Yameen said, and conveyed conveyed condolences on behalf of the government and the people of the Maldives.
Abdul Kalam served as president of India from 2005 to 2007. He died yesterday at the Bethany Hospital, Shillong. The state funeral is due to take place tomorrow in Rameshwaram.
The MDP said in a statement today that the party is “deeply saddened” by Kalam’s sudden passing.
“A man of great intellect, President Kalam was a renowned scientist who emerged from humble beginnings who rose to hold the highest office of his country,” the opposition party said.
“He was one of the most beloved presidents of India, popularly regarded as the People’s President. His loss will be deeply felt and mourned not only by the people of India but throughout the South Asia region and across the world.
“At this time of national grief, the leadership and the members of the MDP extend their deepest condolences to the Government and the people of India, along with the members of the bereaved family.”
The Indian High Commission in the Maldives announced in a statement that the Indian government is observing seven days of state mourning throughout the country as well its diplomatic missions overseas.
“A Condolence Book would be kept open in the High Commission of India, Malé from 29 to 30 July 2015 from 1000 hrs to 1300 hrs for those who wish to pay their last respects to late President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.”