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Thank you for everything: British PM to Lord Paul

July 07, 2009 13:52 IST

'Thank you for everything you have done' -- with these words Prime Minister Gordon Brown applauded the contribution made to Britain by Lord Swraj Paul, NRI industrialist.

Brown, his wife Sarah and their two children were among some 1,200 guests who came together at the London zoo to remember Ambika, Lord Paul's daughter, who passed away 41 years ago after she was brought to London for treatment of leukaemia.

Paul, who made London his home since then, made one-million-pound donation to the zoo some years ago to save it from closure. He has made another contribution of an undisclosed sum this year to the zoo for a new children's zoo opened recently.

Paul praised Brown, who has faced rough weather politically in recent months, describing him as a great prime minister.

"In spite of what is being written in the press, I think you (Gordon Brown) have been a great Prime Minister and this country owes a lot to you for what you have done for its economic stability -- just not only what you have done to this country but to many other countries," Paul said.

"Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh and you have such high regard for each other and both are looking forward to meeting each other at the G-8 Summit in Italy," Paul said.

Brown and his family, who spent nearly two hours at the zoo, said: "Thank you for your generosity and organising the party every year in memory of your daughter Ambika. That memory will be there forever."

"This is a great day for families. This is the day families come together to celebrate the memory of Ambika."

The British prime minister also stated that the Queen has made Lord Paul a member of the Privy Council and 'he will be known as the Right Honourable Lord Paul.'

Foreign secretary David Miliband, secretary of state for business, Lord Peter Mandelson, secretary of state for energy Ed Miliband, secretary of state for international development Douglas Alexander, leader of the House of Lords Baroness Royall, Attorney General Baroness Scotland, chief whip of Commons, Nick Brown, minister of state, Foreign and Commonwealth Office looking after India, Lord Malloch-Brown were among those present on the occasion.

Former minister Keith Vaz, Labour MP, minister of state for transport Sadiq Khan, Sri Lankan high commissioner Justice Nihal Singhe and deputy high commissioner of India to the UK Asoke Mukherjee also attended the function.

H S Rao in London
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