Allahabad: Veteran socialist leader and
Samajwadi Party vice-president Janeshwar Mishra, who died of a
heart attack, was on Saturday cremated with full state honours in
the presence of political leaders cutting across party lines.
Almost all the top brass of Samajwadi Party, including
its chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, state president Akhilesh Yadav,
Leader of the Opposition in the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Sabha
Shivpal Singh Yadav and national general secretary Ram Gopal
Yadav were present at the cremation ground situated along the
river Ganges in Daraganj locality of the city where Mishra`s
younger brother Tarkeshwar Mishra lit the funeral pyre.
Uttar Pradesh Congress president Rita Bahuguna Joshi
and vice-president Shekhar Bahuguna also visited the "ghat" to
pay homage to the late leader who died at the age of 77.
Railway Board member (Traffic) Vivek Sahay too flew in
from Delhi to place a wreath on the former Union Minister`s
body on behalf of the Ministry of Railways, one of the many
portfolios Mishra had held during his four-decade-long
In addition, a large number of local residents too had
gathered at the cremation ground to catch the last glimpse of
Mishra, who was fondly referred to as "Chhote (junior) Lohia"
by politicians and common people alike.
A three-time Rajya Sabha member, Mishra died of a
heart attack yesterday afternoon.
A founding member of the Samajwadi Party, Mishra had
also got elected to the Lok Sabha four times and held
ministerial positions during the Prime Ministerial tenures of
Morarji Desai, Chaudhary Charan Singh, V P Singh,
Chandrashekhar, H D Deve Gowda and I K Gujral.
Meanwhile, Akhilesh Yadav accused the state government of
failing to give due respect to the late leader.
"Mishraji was one of those rare leaders who commanded
respect cutting across party lines. But the state government
does not seem to appreciate that. The arrangements for his
funeral have been a huge disappontment," he told reporters
Yadav, who had been camping at the late leader`s
residence since last night, made the remarks at the cremation
ground when his comments were sought on the absence of any
representative of the state government at the funeral
Earlier in the day, state minister for Higher Education
Rakesh Dhar Tripathi had visited Mishra`s house, where the
body was kept.
However, party sources were of the view that the visit
was a "personal gesture" from Tripathi, who had himself been a
socialist in his early political career and that Yadav was
upset over the fact that Mayawati government did not depute
any official representative to attend the funeral ceremony.