New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Monday visited the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) headquarters here to condole the death of Marxist patriarch Jyoti Basu, saying the country has "lost a great statesman and patriot".
The Prime Minister reached the AK Gopalan Bhavan in the heart of the city at 11.10 am It was a building that Basu had visited many times when he was active in CPI-M affairs and also as West Bengal chief minister.
"Our country has lost a great son who was a great statesman and great patriot," Manmohan Singh wrote in the condolence book. Basu was the chief minister from 1977 to 2000 and died Sunday at the age of 95 in Kolkata.
"I convey my deepest condolences to the members of the bereaved family and countless admirers, comrades and followers of Shri Basu," he said, referring to the man who played a key role in the Left`s decision to prop up the Congress-led government of Manmohan Singh in 2004.
A framed photograph of Basu, who died in Kolkata Sunday, has been placed near the reception area in the office for visitors to pay tribute.
Vice President Hamid Ansari also visited the office at around 10.45 am.
He noted: "The country mourns the passing away of a patriot and a great statesman."
Both Manmohan Singh and Ansari were received by CPI-M politburo members Sitaram Yechury and K Varadrajan.