Odisha school mourns Vajpayee’s ‘death’, probe ordered

Bhubaneswar: A school in Odisha has mourned the “death” of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, prompting authorities to suspend the headmaster and order a probe on Monday.

“After an inquiry, we found that the school headmaster had asked to pay homage to the former prime minister on Friday after he received misleading information about the death of Vajpayee,” said district education officer Hrushikesh Tandi.

The Balasore district administration suspended Kamlakanta Das, the headmaster of Budakhunta UGME School.

After getting misleading information, the headmaster, who was participating in a training programme in another school, called up another teacher and told him to pay homage to Vajpayee and close the school for the day.

According to Tandi, a condolence meeting was held and a holiday was declared on Friday at the school to mourn the death of the former prime minister.

The district collector ordered a probe when he learnt about the episode from the locals.

Vajpayee, who was recently conferred with Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian honour, was India’s prime minister three times and is still alive.