Karnataka Governor Vajubjai Vala, state Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, BJP's state unit president BS Yeddyurappa and other leaders mourned the death of Atal Bihari Vajpayee in New Delhi on Thursday evening.
"I condole the sad demise of former Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee. In his death, the nation has lost a great visionary statesman and pious leader, who was respected and loved by all," said Vala in a message from Raj Bhavan.
Recalling Vajpayee's hard work for the uplift of the poor and downtrodden throughout his life, the Governor said the veteran leader's vision and work would be remembered by every citizen across the country.
"India has lost a great leader in terms of his sincere and dedicated action to the motherland. Praying to Almighty for his eternal peace," added Vala.
Expressing grief on Vajpayee's demise, Kumaraswamy said the former prime minister was a great visionary who believed that national highways were like the lines on a palm, showing the future.
"Vajpayee was a rare breed of politicians who lived the values they believed. His death has created a vacuum in the country," said Kumaraswamy in a condolence message.
Quoting a line from Vajpayee's poem 'Will never accept defeat', the Chief Minister said the veteran leader's writings mirrored his personality.
"Vajpayee believed in brotherhood and harmony and tried to bind the country with the Golden Quadrangle national highway project. He was also a great orator and a seasoned parliamentarian," recalled Kumaraswamy.
Noting that the country had lost a great political thinker and statesman, former BJP's state chief minister Yeddyurappa said he had no words to describe Vajpayee.
"Vajpayee's death is a great loss to the country, people and the BJP for which he was a leading and guiding spirit," said Yeddyurappa in a statement.
Recalling that the country had witnessed an astute politician and an amiable prime minister, the party's state unit chief said Vajpayee's organisational and political acumen were put to test during his regime when he led the NDA government consisting of over 25 parties with each having political agendas of their own.
Noting that Vajpayee was 'Ajatha Shatru' (a man without enemies) of contemporary Indian politics, Yeddyurappa said he was grieved by his death.
"May his soul rest in peace," he added.
Terming Vajpayee as one of the most respected, loved and broad-hearted statesman India had seen, Congress' state unit president Dinesh Gundu Rao said the former prime minister was a towering personality and a great orator.
"I express my condolence on his passing away. We are all going to miss him," said Rao in a tweet
The Karnataka government on Thursday declared a seven-day state mourning as a mark of respect to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee who died in New Delhi earlier in the day, an official statement said.
"No official programmes or engagements will be held during the mourning period (August 16-22). The national flag will fly at half-mast on government buildings across the state," the statement said here.
The state also declared a holiday on Friday for schools, colleges and government offices in all districts, except those where officials are involved in rescue and relief operations following heavy rains.
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy will fly to New Delhi on Friday morning to pay his last respects to Vajpayee at the latter's residence.