Gangtok, 17 Jul:

Chief Minister, Pawan Chamling along with Cabinet Ministers and MLAs of Sikkim received the mortal remains of former Chief Minister, Nar Bahadur Bhandari, here at Rangpo today.

The former Chief Minister of Sikkim breathed his last on 16 July at Primus Super Speciality Hospital in New Delhi after a prolonged illness. His mortal remains were brought to Sikkim House where it was kept till the morning of 17 July.

After a ceremonial Guard of Honour by IRB Jawans at Sikkim House, New Delhi, the body was flown to Bagdogra Airport where it was received and escorted by a team of senior State Government officials led by Secretary Home [Protocol], SK Pradhan.

The State Government has announced a seven-day period of State mourning from 17-23 Jul during which time the National Flag will be flown at half-mast as a mark of respect to the departed soul.

The day of the departed leader’s funeral, which falls on 19 July, has been declared a State holiday by the Government. All government offices, educational institutions and public undertakings will remain closed on the day.

Further, the mortal remains of the late leader has been kept at his home, Primula Cottage here at Church Road, for those wishing to pay their last respects. The funeral procession is scheduled to begin from Primula Cottage at 11 a.m. on 19 Jul. The final rites will be performed at Ranipool with full State honors.

Nar Bahadur Bhandari was born on 05 Oct, 1940 in Malbasey village near Soreng, West Sikkim. He served as a school teacher for some years before joining politics and later went on to become the Chief Minister of the State for three terms.

He is survived by his wife, Dil Kumari Bhandari, who is also a former Member of Parliament [Lok Sabha] from Sikkim, three daughters and a son.