Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew lies in state, thousands bid goodbye

Thousands of Singaporeans queued up to pay final respects and bid goodbye to their founding father and first PM as Lee Kuan Yew's body lied in state in the Parliament House.

By Supriya Jha | Updated: Mar 25, 2015, 14:57 PM IST
Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew lies in state, thousands bid goodbye

Singapore: Thousands of Singaporeans queued up to pay final respects and bid goodbye to their founding father and first PM as Lee Kuan Yew's body lied in state in the Parliament House.

91-year-old Lee, Singapore's stalwart leader, lost his battle to pneumonia after battling the disease for last six weeks in Singapore's General Hospital.

The government has declared a week of mourning for the leader.

Thousands of mourners lined the streets to catch a final glimpse of their leader as a ceremonial gun carriage carrying Lee's coffin draped in national flag wound its way from the presidential palace to the Parliament House. 

As Lee's coffin was moving through the streets, being led by his son Lee Hseing Loo and other children military and government representatives, several mourners with tears in their eyes said goodbye or showered flower bouquets. Others in the crowd chanted his name "Lee Kuan Yew".

Lee will lie in state until Saturday ahead of a funeral Sunday.

Earlier, Lee's body had been resting at the Istana - the compound hosuing the presidential palace and the prime minister's office - for a private mourning period for the family.

Lee, who governed Singapore for 31 years as PM since 1959, was known for his fierce leadership skills and is credited with transforming the former British colony to a financial powerhouse.