gfiles magazine

May 10, 2012

Lining up for Prez

Lining up for Prez
pranabda may opt out
India will select the first citizen of the country in July. And, the heat and dust has begun. All the major political parties want a say in selecting the next resident of Rashtrapati Bhavan. If insiders are to be believed, the Congress has decided that there will be no elevation for the Vice-President and no repetition of past and present Presidents (read Kalam and Patil ). Mamata Banerjee too is reluctant to elevate Vice-President Hamid Ansari. This does clear the mists for the wannabees. Many new contenders have emerged in the last three months. Leading the race are NRI entrepreneur and Rahul Gandhi advisor Sam Pitroda, Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson and former West Bengal governor Gopal Gandhi, Infosys Chairman Emeritus NR Narayana Murthy, India’s self claimed reformer ex-President APJ Abdul Kalam, Congress stalwart Pranab Mukherjee, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Motilal Vora. There are one or two more names but they are not in the reckoning. Insiders inform that Pranabda will exit from the race by issuing a statement that he clearly cannot be spared from the Cabinet and the party needs him at this juncture. There’s also another aspect to the race for President. Some so-called political preachers are demanding that the President of India should be apolitical. The question we would like to ask them is: If the President, Vice-President and Prime Minister (at present all don’t face the electorate directly) are apolitical, then why should they build a political career at all? This does not sound politically correct! g

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