The Adm passed away in Fortis Hospital Vasant Kunj at about 2300 hrs on Mon 11 may. The Navy made all arrangements for his funeral with full military honours as I believe it is laid down in a NAVY ORDER.
The Navy was very efficient and its conduct very laudable.
The body was brought from the hospital to his younger son Lt Cdr (retd) Suresh Nanda's house at 4, Prithvi Raj Road at about 1200 hrs where Commodores in No 2s stood vigil till it was loaded on to the gun carriage by Pall bearers in No 2s.
Between 1315 & 1345 wreaths were laid personally by CNS , COAS & VCAS. CNS & COAS were accompanied by respective spouses who condoled with Mrs Nanda.
At Brar Square CNS was again present to lead the laying of wreaths. Practically all Vice Admirals , a large number of other senior officers, officers and men were present.
The guard and band lent due solemnity to the occasion.
A large number of retd officers - Adm Tahiliani, Air Chief Marshal Tipnis- among them also laid wreaths, Col Kirit Joshipura did so on behalf of the IESM.
I felt that the Navy gave its grand old man a very befitting farewell. His demise marks the end of an era.
The Prayer meet ( chautha/uthala) was held yesterday 14th May from 1600-1700 hrs at the Kamani auditorium. It was chock-a-block with family, friends and retd naval officeres of all ranks.
After 30 minutes of Bhajans , the children and grandchildren paid tributes. The last speaker was VAdm 'Mihir Roy who was the late Admiral's DNI in 1971 and also knew him well. He spoke very well. (By the way his article about the Admiral's achievements was published in Indian Express yesterdy. Let me know if you need a copy) .
Marshal of the Air Force, Arjan Singh, entered the hall, went up and saluted the Admiral's photo and offered flowers.
CNS could not come as he was busy with a foreign delegation but Mrs Mehta represented him.
Ministers Kamal Nath and Anand Sharma also came for the prayer meet.
The Admiral led a full and eventful life ( 10 Oct 1925-11 May 2009) . He went on his final journey in a befitting manner, leaving behind his footprints in the sands of time.
Most laudable was the way the Navy represented by INS India took charge and conducted the funeral from A to zee.