VHP leader Giriraj Kishore passes away at 94
New Delhi: Senior Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Giriraj Kishore, who was actively associated with the Ram temple agitation, died here this evening following prolonged illness. He was 94.
"He was ailing for some time now. He died peacefully at the VHP headquarters in RK Puram at 9.15 pm," VHP Delhi unit spokesperson Vinod Bansal said.
Wheelchair-bound Giriraj was suffering from prostrate cancer for some years, senior VHP functionary Rajinder Pankaj said.
Like on other days, Giriraj got up at 3 AM today and was given a bath, he said, adding his condition deteriorated during the day.
He joined the VHP in 1983 during the first Bharat Mata Yatra. He later served as the senior vice president of the VHP International wing and was now serving on the advisory board of the organisation.
Born on February 4, 1920 in Etah district of Uttar Pradesh, Giriraj who was a school teacher in Morena, for taking an active role in the Ram Janmabhoomi agitation. Giriraj had joined the RSS at an early age and was one of its seniormost `pracharaks`.
A post-graduate in Hindi, Political Science and History, Giriraj was sent to the VHP by the Sangh.
A bachelor, Giriraj Kishore, was wheelchair-bound for the last several years. He had recently pledged to donate his body for social cause.
At the helm of the Ram temple movement, Giriraj had declared that "no power on earth, including the judiciary, can stop the construction of a Ram temple".
As Giriraj had pledged to donate his body for social cause, VHP was deciding on as to how to about his last rites.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is in Berlin on his way to Brazil for the BRICS Summit, condoled the passing away of Giriraj.
"Received the sad news of Acharya Giriraj Kishore ji`s demise...A life devoted to service of Motherland. I pay my homage," the Prime Minister tweeted.
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