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
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’