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Country Has Lost a Distinguished National Leader, Tall Statesman: Govt on Pranab Mukherjee

Country Has Lost a Distinguished National Leader, Tall Statesman: Govt on Pranab Mukherjee

The Union Home Ministry in a gazette notification also said Mukherjee, who passed away on Monday at the Army Research and Referral Hospital here at the age of 84, was a man of unparalleled experience in governance.

The government on Tuesday said with the passing away of former President Pranab Mukherjee, the country has lost a distinguished national leader, an accomplished parliamentarian and a tall statesman. The Union Home Ministry in a gazette notification also said Mukherjee, who passed away on Monday at the Army Research and Referral Hospital here at the age of 84, was a man of unparalleled experience in governance.

"Shri Mukherjee has left his imprint on our national life. In his death, the country has lost a distinguished national leader, an accomplished Parliamentarian and a tall statesman," the notification said. Mukherjee served as Union Foreign, Defence, Commerce and Finance Minister at different times.

"Shri Pranab Mukherjee, 13th President of India was a man of unparalleled experience in governance," it said. Born on December 11, 1935 in the small village of Mirati in Birbhum District of West Bengal, Mukherjee acquired a Master's degree in History and Political Science as well as a degree in Law from the University of Kolkata.

He then embarked on his professional life as a college teacher and journalist, the notification said. Inspired by his father's contribution to the national movement, Mukherjee started his full time public life following his election to Rajya Sabha in 1969.

Mukherjee served as Deputy Minister, Industry; Shipping and Transport, Steel and Industry and Minister of State for Finance during 1973-75. He assumed office as Finance Minister of India for the first time in 1982 and was Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha from 1980 to 1985. He became Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission from 1991 to 1996; concurrently Minister for Commerce from 1993 to 1995 and Minister of External Affairs from 1995 to 1996.

He was Minister of Defence from 2004 to 2006. He again served as Minister of External Affairs from 2006 to 2009 and Minister of Finance from 2009 to 2012. He was Leader of the House in Lok Sabha from 2004 to 2012.

Mukherjee assumed office of the President of India on July 25, 2012 and served his full term of five years. As President, Mukherjee lent dignity to the high office and brought to bear his scholarly and humanitarian outlook on national and international affairs, the notification said.

Mukherjee was a prolific reader. He has authored several books on the Indian Economy and Nation Building. The many awards and honours conferred on him include the Best Parliamentarian Award in 1997, Padma Vibhusan in 2008 and India's highest civilian award, Bharat Ratna in 2019, it said.

first published:September 01, 2020, 23:46 IST