The Maharashtra government will set up a study chair in the name of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in each of the 13 universities in the state, Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar announced on Tuesday.
The Maharashtra unit of the BJP will pay rich tributes to Vajpayee at a function to be held in Mumbai on Wednesday and in 13 other cities in coming days.
Mungantiwar told reporters that Union ministers Piyush Goyal and Prakash Javadekar and Maharashtra BJP chief Raosaheb Danve will arrive with a urn containing ashes of Vajpayee in a flight on Wednesday.
The urn will be taken to the NCPA (National Centre for the Performing Arts) in south Mumbai where tributes will be paid to the BJP patriarch at a function being organised by the state BJP unit at 6 PM.
“Leaders of other parties can also join us in offering their tributes to Atalji,” the minister said.
Mungantiwar said the ashes of Vajpayee will be immersed into 11 rivers in 13 cities including Mumbai and Pune across Maharashtra in coming days.
The ashes will be immersed while adhering to the norms of the National Green Tribunal, the minister said.
He said the state government has created a corpus of Rs 20 crore for setting up the study chair in the name of Vajpayee in 11 state universities and two private varsities.
Mungantiwar said the state unit of the BJP has also decided to fund research on the life and works of Vajpayee by paying Rs 3 lakh each to ten students who wish to pursue a doctorate on the former premier.
The students can pursue their doctorate in any university, he added.
Vajpayee, 93, died at the AIIMS hospital in Delhi on August 16 following a prolonged illness.