President Pranab Mukherjee was given farewell in the Parliament Central Hall where he delivered his farewell speech to the audience gathered. In the speech, he praised Prime Minister Modi and had a stern though indirect message for the opposition.
Praising Prime Minister Modi, President Mukherjee said, “In this task, I greatly benefitted from the advice and cooperation extended by Prime Minister Modi at every step.
“With passion and energy, he is driving transformational changes in the country. I will carry with me fond memories of our association and his warm and courteous behaviour.”
This means a lot coming from the President as he has closely seen Prime Minister Modi work since 2014. He was under no obligation to praise the prime minister, yet his doing so highlights the fact that he was truly impressed with Prime Minister Modi’s dedication to change the ongoing situation of the nation.
He spoke about his own responsibilities as the President: “In these five years, my principal responsibility was to function as the guardian of the Constitution. As I had said on oath, I strived to preserve, protect and defend our Constitution, not just in word but also in spirit.”
What can only be construed as a jibe at the opposition, President Mukherjee said, “It is unfortunate that the parliamentary time devoted to legislation has been declining.”
In the last few parliament sessions, the opposition has been stalling work in the parliament on baseless issues. It has been obstructing discussions and forcing sessions to be adjourned almost regularly. This has led to immense wastage of funds and time.
Pranab Mukherjee became the President in July 2012 when Manmohan Singh was the prime minister. For two years Pranab Mukherjee worked with Manmohan Singh as well, but he made no mention of him in his speech.
As the country bids farewell to Pranab Mukherjee, Ram Nath Kovind is all set to be India’s 14th President. He defeated UPA presidential candidate Meira Kumar convincingly as he gathered over 65% votes.