Hyderabad: Various leaders of the state on Friday offered prayers here as a mark of respect to former Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao, whose 98th birth anniversary was celebrated across the country today.
Ramchander Rao, a Member of Legislative Council (MLC) of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), told ANI: "The entire nation is celebrating the 98th birthday of the former Prime Minister. He was a great soul, who laid the foundation for a new economy by bringing liberalisation and globalisation to the country. During his reign, the country underwent a lot of economic changes."
"As he was the first Telugu person to become the Prime Minister, I request the state government to organise various activities on his 100th birthday so that young generation gets to know his legacy."
BJP's state unit president K Laxman and former Union Minister Bandaru Dattatreya also offered prayers and paid floral tributes to Rao.
Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka, a Congress MLA, told ANI: "Rao is a pride for Telangana. During his regime, he had done a commendable job for the land reforms in the state. As a former Human Resource Development Minister, he played a major role in providing education to the common people. We are really proud of him."
Rao, the ninth Prime Minister of India, assumed office in June 1991 and stayed in power till May 1996. He is credited with bringing many economic reforms in the country, particularly dismantling the License Raj.
It was during Rao's tenure Dr Manmohan Singh was appointed the Finance Minister, who ushered in a series of economic reforms to lift the country from a worsening economic crisis.
However, Rao's five-year tenure also saw the destruction of the Babri mosque in Uttar Pradesh's Ayodhya in 1992, which led to Hindu-Muslim riots across the country.
Rao, a six-time MP, breathed his last at the age of 83 in 2004....