Sharmishtha Mukherjee: My Father Would Say His Stint with Indira Gandhi Was ‘Golden Period’

Headline: Pranab Mukherjee’s Daughter Unveils Insights into His Political Journey.

Sharmishtha Mukherjee, daughter of former President Pranab Mukherjee, revealed intriguing aspects of her father’s political life during the launch of her book “Pranab My Father: A Daughter Remembers.” Here are some key highlights:

Pranab’s Golden Period with Indira Gandhi

Sharmishtha shared that her father considered his time with former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi as the “golden period” of his political career. Their close bond developed post-emergency, with Pranab Mukherjee standing by Indira Gandhi through thick and thin.

Stance on Rahul Gandhi’s Actions

The book touches on Pranab Mukherjee’s opposition to the proposed ordinance torn by Rahul Gandhi in 2013. While he disagreed with the approach, he believed in parliamentary discussions rather than immediate dismissal.

Collaboration with PM Modi

Sharmishtha emphasized her father’s teamwork with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his tenure as President, dispelling notions of political bias.

Clash Over RSS Event

Recounting a disagreement with her father, Sharmishtha revealed their clash over his decision to attend an RSS event. Pranab Mukherjee justified it as fostering democracy through dialogue with the opposition.

Congress and Parliamentary Democracy

Pranab Mukherjee, according to Sharmishtha, often emphasized that the Congress played a pivotal role in establishing and upholding parliamentary democracy.

Trust Deficit with Rajiv Gandhi

Addressing rumors of a trust deficit between Pranab Mukherjee and Rajiv Gandhi, Sharmishtha clarified that planted stories aimed to create misunderstandings due to her father’s strong personality.

Setbacks and Comebacks

Sharmishtha touched on her father’s expulsion from Congress in 1986 and his subsequent return. She also discussed his disappointment at not being included in the PV Narasimha Rao cabinet.

Mutual Respect with Manmohan Singh

Highlighting a working relationship marked by courtesy and mutual respect, Sharmishtha spoke about Pranab Mukherjee’s collaboration with former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, emphasizing their ability to handle differences.

Presidential Candidacy Uncertainty

While unsure about her father being the first choice for the President’s post, Sharmishtha revealed insights from Mukherjee’s diary, suggesting that Mrs. Gandhi explored various possibilities, including Shri Hamid Ansari.

In the face of criticism, Sharmishtha urged introspection within the Congress party, emphasizing the need to uphold values and principles.