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Former Prime Minister and Bharat Ratna recipient Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s mortal remains, draped in the Tricolour, made their final journey today, first from his Krishna Menon Marg residence to the BJP headquarters at Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg where political leaders paid their last respects. His cortege then moved for the last rites Smriti Sthal, on the banks of the Yamuna where the ceremony was attended by visiting heads of state and members of the Indian political fraternity.
Photo by @sanchitkhanna94

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Former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the first non-Congress leader to serve a full term in power, died August 16, 2018 at AIIMS in New Delhi, where he had been undergoing treatment for a kidney ailment since June. Renowned for his powerful oratory and poetry, Vajpayee, 93, one of the founder members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), served as prime minister for 13 days in 1996, 13 months (1998-99) at the head of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government and then for a full five year term (1999-2004). A look at the two sides of the gentleman politician.

Photos: HT Archive

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Standing tall inside the Delhi Zoo is this beautiful specimen of India’s national tree -banyan or bargad. Largely used as an avenue tree in the Capital, banyan trees are considered immortal and are an integral part of the myths and legends of India.

Photo by @sanchitkhanna94
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Located in Rajasthan, Sambhar lake is India’s largest inland saline lake. Come monsoon season, its salt pans turn home to an annual population of migratory birds from as far away as Europe. Among these, the greater and lesser flamingos are perhaps the most popular. HT photographer @vipinkumarht brings images of their arrival and settling in this year.

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From parades, flag hoisting ceremonies to cultural events and daredevil performances as India celebrates its Independence Day 2018. Here is a glimpse of Independence Day celebrations from across the country.
Photos by @aripho1 @nitinkanotra @sehgal.sameer @sanstadeepak007 @mujeeb_faruqui @waseem_andrabi
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As India celebrates Independence Day 2018, here’s a selection from the HT Archives, of landmarks along India’s journey so far that left indelible marks on modern India's consciousness and helped shape the idea and experience of the world’s largest democratic system for its nearly 1.3 billion people.

Photos: HT Archive

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Gajanand Sharma (R) who returned to India after spending thirty-six years in a Pakistani prison shares a light moment with his wife Makhni Devi (L) in Jaipur, Rajasthan. Gajanand, now 68, went missing in 1982 and was part of the 30 Indian prisoners released on Monday by Pakistan as a goodwill gesture on the occasion of country's Independence Day on August 14.
Photo by @pauseinlight
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Next in our series featuring trees from across Delhi, we have a mango tree, as seen in Roshanara Bagh. Laid by Shah Jahan's younger daughter Roshanara Begum-whose tomb is situated in it- Roshanara Bagh is the perfect venue to spot several mango trees, with their characteristic slender leaved and tiny flowers.

Photo by @rajkraj_ht
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Launching a petition to the local station in February, bridegroom Sanjay Jatav’s fight for an equal wedding and permission to take out his wedding procession through the upper caste dominated areas in Nizampur –his bride’s village – in Kasganj district, Uttar Pradesh became as important for the village as for the nation at a time when caste conflicts seem to have turned on their axis. Jatav’s wedding etched a landmark because he refused to back down in a scenario that has frequently triggered boycotts or bloodshed in the region.

Photos by @burhaankinu @anushree_fadnavis
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President S.D. Sharma (L) confers the Best Parliamentarian Award 1996 on the veteran Somnath Chatterjee (R) at a function in the Central Hall of the Parliament House on March 19, 1996. A ten-term parliamentarian and former Lok Sabha speaker, Chatterjee died today at a hospital in Kolkata. He was aged 89.

Photo: HT Archive

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Behind the scenes views of preparations and celebrations lined up for the 71st Independence Day, from today’s final full dress rehearsals in New Delhi and Ludhiana.

Photos by @rajkraj_ht & @gurpreetht
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Author V S Naipaul died peacefully in London, at the age of 85. Awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2001, Naipaul explored the questions of identity and place amid the shards of empire through his novels and travelogues in a literary career spanning five decades. He is seen here on Aley Hasan’s “Guest of the week”, a programme on the BBC Hindi Service.

Photo: HT Archive

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