India announced a day of National Mourning on Sunday, September 11, to mark the passing of the Queen of United Kingdom, Elizabeth II.
The government announced the day of mourning on Friday, adding that President Droupadi Murmu, Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankar, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi sent condolence messages to the U.K. royal family and government.
“In their messages, they noted that she was a stalwart of our times; a compassionate personality and provided inspiring leadership to her nation and people,” a government statement said.
The British High Commission in Delhi opened a condolence book at High Commissioner Alex Ellis’s residence for those wishing to convey their respects. The book will be available on Saturday and Monday.
“She led an exemplary life of strength, duty, hard work and dignity. It’s a sad day but also a day to give thanks for a long life well lived to service of others,” Mr. Ellis said, speaking to journalists in both English and Hindi.
As preparations begin in the U.K. for the funeral ceremonies as well as other ceremonies to mark the ascension of King Charles III to the British throne, New Delhi is also considering whether to send its High Commissioner-designate Vikram Doraiswamy earlier than scheduled, sources told The Hindu.
Mr. Doraiswamy, who is currently India’s envoy to Bangladesh, and has been in Delhi for the State visit of Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina, was due to travel to London at the end of September, so as to present his credentials.
In a tweet, Mr. Doraiswamy called it “truly a sad day”, adding that Queen Elizabeth was an “icon for the Commonwealth”.
As per the protocol, the National Flag would be flown at half-mast on Sunday and there will be no official entertainment that day, the government said.
Earlier this year, the government had similarly declared a day of mourning for assassinated Japanese former PM Shinzo Abe and UAE President and Abu Dhabi Ruler Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.