Former President Pranab Mukherjee passes away at 84
Known as “Man for all seasons,” Mukherjee played a crucial role in getting through the controversial Indo-US nuclear deal – 123 Agreement — and earning an exemption for India from the Nuclear Suppliers Group.
New Delhi: Former Indian President Pranab Mukherjee passed away at the age of 84 in Delhi.
Pranab, who served as the 13th President of India, was hospitalised at the Army Hospital on August 10.
The condition of Mukherjee declined on Monday morning (August 31) and he has suffered a septic shock due to his lung infection, the Army’s Research and Referral Hospital said.
The former President had also tested positive for COVID-19 at the time of his admission.
Starting off as a protege of Indira Gandhi, who stood beside her during the Emergency, Mukherjee came to be known as a crisis manager who commanded the respect of all and had friends across the aisle.
The once Congress stalwart wore many hats over the last five decades in public life and 37 years in Parliament. He was conferred the Bharat Ratna last year.
Mukherjee worked under three Prime Ministers – Indira Gandhi, Narasimha Rao and Dr Manmohan Singh. He is the only finance minister to have presented budgets both before the 1991 reforms in the license-permit raj regime as well after the 1991 economic reforms.
He took bold decisions after the global economic crisis of 2008 which helped shield the Indian economy. As commerce minister in 1993, Pranabda championed the cause of trade liberalisation.