MMS: Pranab was More Qual­i­fied to Be PM, But Knew I had No Choice

QUITE CAN­DID Singh’s re­mark at the launch of Mukher­jee’s book leaves au­di­ence in splits

The Economic Times - - Pure Politics -

For­mer Pres­i­dent Pranab Mukher­jee and for­mer prime min­is­ter Man­mo­han Singh at the re­lease of his book ‘The Coali­tion Years’ in New Delhi on Fri­day he was bet­ter qual­i­fied than I was to be­come the prime min­is­ter, but he also knew that I have no choice in the mat­ter,” the for­mer PM said as the au­di­ence, in­clud­ing So­nia Gandhi and Rahul, burst into guf­faw.

Mukher­jee wrote in his book that af­ter the 2004 elec­tion vic­tory there was in­tense spec­u­la­tion in the party about who would be the prime min­is­ter, but the con­sen­sus within the Congress was that the in­cum­bent should be a po­lit­i­cal leader with ex­pe­ri­ence in party af­fairs and ad­min­is­tra­tion.

“Thep­reva­len­t­ex­pec­ta­tion was that I would be the next choice for prime min­is­ter af­ter So­nia Gandhi de­clined. This ex­pec­ta­tion­was­pos­si­bly­based on the fact that I had ex­ten­sive ex­pe­ri­ence in gov­ern­ment,” he wrote.

Mukher­jee also said that when he de­clined­to­jointhe­gov­ern­ment­headed by Man­mo­han Singh, So­nia in­sisted on his be­ing a part of it as he would be “vi­tal to its func­tion­ing and also be of sup­port of Singh”.

Singh de­scribes Mukher­jee as ‘most dis­tin­guished liv­ing par­lia­men­tar­ian & Con­gress­man’

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