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A memorial of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was dedicated to the nation on his birth anniversary on Tuesday at Rashtriya Smriti Sthal. BJP president Amit Shah, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and family members of Atal Bihari Vajpayee were present on the occasion.

Vajpayee passed way on August 16 at AIIMS after a prolonged illness. He was cremated with full state honours.

Also, a special prayer meeting was organised at Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s Samadhi near Rajghat.

According to the Atal Smriti Nyas Society, that has developed a memorial — Sadaiv Atal, the memorial is spread over 1.5 acres of land.

Vajpayee had served as the Prime Minister between 1998 and 2004.

Vajpayee’s birth anniversary will be celebrated as Good Governance Day across the country.

The memorial is spread over 1.5 acres of land at Rashtriya Smriti Sthal. The samadhi reflects Vajpayee’s personality as a poet, humanist, statesman and a great leader.

An official said a vacant piece of land was made available for the memorial at Rashtriya Smriti Sthal by the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry.

It was constructed by the Centre Public Works Department (CPWD) in just five months at a cost of Rs 10.51 crore. The project was funded by the Atal Smriti Nyas Society, he said.

“Atalji’s thoughts and vision are a source of inspiration to the people of the country. To enable people to pay their respects to the great soul, an initiative to develop his samadhi was taken up by the society,” the official said.

Senior BJP leader and society president Vijay Kumar Malhotra told PTI that the memorial is spread over 1.5 acres of land at Rashtriya Smriti Sthal, where Vajpayee was cremated on August 17.

The Sadaiv Atal is enclosed by nine bas-relief walls which have inscriptions of the poetry of Atal Bihari Vajpayee, a PTI report said. Interestingly, not a single tree was cut down in developing Sadaiv Atal. The Rashtriya Smriti Sthal also houses memorials of former Presidents, Prime Ministers.

The founding members of Atal Smriti Nyas Society include Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, Bihar Governor Lalji Tandon, Gujarat Governor OP Kohli, Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Rudabhai Vala, BJP leaders Vijay Kumar Malhotra and Ram Lal.

Meanwhile, a ‘Kavi Sammelan’ will be organised in Himachal Pradesh’s Kullu district to mark the birth anniversary of the former prime minister. “Manali always remained a second home for Vajpayee Ji and he had a special attachment with Kullu-Manali.

The people of Kullu-Manali also loved him from the core of their hearts,” Forest and Transport Minister Govind Singh Thakur said, adding that poems written by Vajpayee will be recited on the occasion.

On Monday, PM Modi released Rs 100 commemorative coin in the memory of the former prime minister on the eve of his 94th birth anniversary.

(Inputs from sources)

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