UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has condoled the death of Atal Bihari Vajpayee and fondly recalled his association with the former Indian prime minister.
Vajpayee, one of India’s most charismatic leaders and inspirational orators, died on August 16 at the age of 93 in New Delhi.
“@UN Secretary General @antonioguterres visits @IndiaUNNewYork to record condolences & recall fondly his association with late Prime Minister Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Syed Akbaruddin tweeted after Guterres signed the condolence book on Wednesday.
Vajpayee, the first external affairs minister to deliver a speech in Hindi at the UN General Assembly, effectively raised India’s stand on key issues like nuclear disarmament, state-sponsored terrorism and reforms at the world body.
Vajpayee, in his role as foreign minister and prime minister, visited the UN headquarters to deliver speeches to the UNGA on seven occasions from 1977 to 2003.
Known for his great oratory skills, Vajpayee first addressed the UNGA’s 32nd session in 1977 as the foreign minister under the Janata Party government headed by then prime minister Morarji Desai.