SINGAPORE - Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan visited the Indian state of Tamil Nadu on Tuesday (Dec 6) to pay his respects to the state's late Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa Jayaram, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said in a statement.
Known affectionately as Amma or mother, Ms Jayalalithaa was India's most powerful and popular regional leader. She died on Monday after suffering a cardiac arrest, following a long period of ill health.
Dr Balakrishnan on Tuesday laid a wreath at the funeral which was held at the Rajaji Hall, the MFA said.
Dr Balakrishnan has also written to the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Mr O Panneerselvam, to send his condolences.
"The late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa dedicated her life to the socio-economic development of Tamil Nadu and through her leadership, Tamil Nadu grew to become one of India's key economies and industrialised states," he wrote in the letter.
"She was also a strong proponent of building closer relations between Tamil Nadu and Singapore," he said.
Dr Balakrishnan said he had met her more than a decade ago in Chennai. "Her passion, energy and grand vision were so inspiring," he said.
"India has lost a great daughter and Singapore a staunch friend. It was therefore with deep sadness that I had attended her funeral to pay my last respects. Her Excellency Jayalalithaa left an indelible mark in Tamil Nadu and will be missed," he added.