Did you know Former President Pranab Mukherjee worked as clerk and journalist?

Updated: 01 September, 2020 09:24 IST | Sunny Rodricks
  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Former President and veteran Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee passed away on Monday at the age of 84. The Congress stalwart, who had tested positive for COVID-19, was admitted to Army Research and Referral Hospital in New Delhi in a critical condition and was on ventilator support. Doctors had stated that Mukherjee was in septic shock due to lung infection.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    As a mark of respect, the Home Ministry announced 7-day state mourning in memory of former President Pranab Mukherjee. As per the MHA statement, the mourning shall be observed throughout India from August 31 to September 6, both days inclusive. During the period of state mourning, the National Flag will fly at half-mast on all buildings across the country.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Late Pranab Mukherjee is survived by three children - daughter Sharmistha and son Indrajit and Abhijit. His son Abhijit Mukherjee took to Twitter to announce the demise of his father. "With a heavy heart, this is to inform you that my father Shri Pranab Mukherjee has just passed away in spite of the best efforts of doctors." he tweeted.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Pranab Mukherjee was born on December 11, 1935, into a Bengali family in Mirati, a village in Birbhum district in West Bengal. Mukherjee's father Kamada Kinkar Mukherjee, a freedom fighter was a member of the West Bengal Legislative Council. His mother was Rajlakshmi Mukherjee. Mukherjee had two siblings, older sister Annapurna and a younger brother Piyush.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Pranab Mukherjee completed his studies from Suri Vidyasagar College in Suri. Post which, he went on to do an MA degree in Political Science and History and an LLB degree from the University of Calcutta.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    He then went on to work as an upper-division Clerk in the Office of the Deputy Accountant-General (Post and Telegraph) in Calcutta. In 1963, Pranab Mukherjee became a lecturer and taught Political Science at the Vidyanagar College in South 24 Paraganas, West Bengal.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Did you know? Before foraying into active politics, Pranab Mukherjee worked as a journalist with a local Bengali newspaper, named Desher Dak (Call of Motherland). In 1969, Mukherjee took baby steps in politics when he managed the successful Midnapore by-election campaign of an independent candidate. His work was recognised by Indira Gandhi, then Prime Minister of India, who made him join the Congress.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    In 1969, Pranab Mukherjee was elected as a member of Rajya Sabha on a Bangla Congress ticket. Subsequently, he was re-elected to the house in 1975, 1981, 1993, and 1999. Four years later, Mukherjee was appointed as the Union Deputy Minister of Industrial Development in Indira Gandhi's cabinet in 1973. Since then, Mukherjee carved a name for himself in the history of Indian politics and never looked back. He was often described as the "man for all seasons".

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Pranab Mukherjee's life-long political career spanned about five decades from 1970 to 2020, during which he held various key posts in Congress as well as in the government led by former Prime Ministers including Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, P V Narasimha Rao and Manmohan Singh.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    In photo: Former President Pranab Mukherjee with his predecessor Pratibha Patil.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    After Indira Gandhi's death in 1984, Mukherjee was sidelined and expelled from the Congress party. He then went on to form his own party called 'Rashtriya Samajwadi Party' which later merged with the Congress party after a compromise was worked with then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Mukherjee's second innings in politics revived under Prime Minister V. Narasimha Rao, who appointed him deputy chairman of the Indian Planning Commission and subsequently as the Union Cabinet Minister. For the first time, Mukherjee worked as the External Affairs Minister from 1995 to 1996 in Rao's cabinet.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    A Gandhi loyalist, Pranab Mukherjee is regarded as the principal architect for launching Sonia Gandhi into active politics. While Mukherjee served many posts, he was guessed to be elected as the Prime Minister of India when Sonia Gandhi rejected the post but Manmohan Singh was appointed as the Prime Minister of India.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Throughout his career, Pranab Mukherjee donned many hats including handling ministries such as Defence, Finance, Commerce and External Affairs. However, Mukherjee ended his bond with the Congress party in 2012 after he was elected as the President of India. He served as India's 13th President from 2012-2017. He retired from politics after leaving the presidency citing "health complications relating to old age". Mukherjee's term ended on July 25, 2017.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    Did you know as the Finance Minister of India, Pranab Mukherjee signed the letter appointing Manmohan Singh as Governor of the Reserve Bank of India? In 1984, Mukherjee was voted as the Best Finance Minister in the World by Euromoney magazine. Interestingly, he was the only Finance Minister to have presented seven budgets to date.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    During his tenure as the President of India, Pranab Mukherjee rejected many mercy pleas including that of Afzal Guru, who was convicted for an attack on the Indian Parliament, and Ajmal Kasab, one of the terrorists of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks. In 2018, Mukherjee surprised everyone when he became the first former President of India to attend and address an RSS event.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    In 2019, Former President Pranab Mukherjee was conferred the Bharat Ratna, the country's highest civilian award, by President Ram Nath Kovind during a ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. He was also awarded Padma Vibhushan, the country's second-highest civilian award in 2008.

    In picture: Pranab Mukherjee is all smiles for the camera as President Ram Nath Kovind confers him with the Bharat Ratna.

  • Pranab Mukherjee

    While Former President Pranab Mukherjee was a people's president, many wonder why he never became the Prime Minister of India. In an interview, when Mukherjee was asked if he ever desired to become Prime Minister he said, "7 RCR was never my destination."

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About The Gallery

Former President Pranab Mukherjee is a name synonym to Indian politics. From working as a clerk to teaching Political Science to college students; from managing by-election campaign to becoming the 13th President of India and being conferred with Bharat Ratna, Pranab da as he was fondly called truly etched a name for himself in the history of Indian politics. A "man for all seasons", Pranab Mukherjee, who passed away on August 31, 2020, was in true sense the "crisis man" of India. Here's a tribute to the original "Dada" of politics.

(All photos/Twitter Pranab Mukherjee, Narendra Modi, Milind Deora)

First Published: 01 September, 2020 09:00 IST