‘Atal Bihari Vajpayee is no longer amidst us, but his memories remain,’ said Aligarh Mayor Shakuntala Bharti.
Agra: Bharatiya Janata Party's beloved leader and former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee turned 92 on Sunday, but one member of the party thought that the veteran is ‘no longer amidst us’.
In a major embarrassment for the saffron party, Aligarh Mayor Shakuntala Bharti on Saturday referred to Vajpayee as ‘deceased’ leader, while addressing students of a school in Aligarh.
According to reports, she was speaking at an event organised to celebrate Vajpayee’s birthday and to mark the 155th birth anniversary of Madan Mohan Malviya.
“India’s former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee is no longer amidst us, but his memories remain,” Bharti said. Many leaders were shocked by her comments and condemned her ignorance.
Cornered over this mistake, Bharti later tried to clarify that she was referring to Malviya and not Vajpayee but soon apologised when she was confronted with video proof.
She said she may have committed a mistake and said she wished Vajpayee a “long and healthy life.