Former President Pranab Mukherjee passes away at 84

Former President Pranab Mukherjee
Former President Pranab Mukherjee died on Monday in Delhi’s Army’s Research and Referral (R&R) Hospital, where he had been admitted a few weeks ago for a brain surgery. He was 84. Mukherjee had tested positive for the coronavirus disease before undergoing a successful surgery to remove a brain clot.

"With a Heavy Heart , this is to inform you that my father Shri Pranab Mukherjee has just passed away inspite of the best efforts of Doctors of RR Hospital and prayers, duas and prarthanas from people throughout India ! I thank all of You," his son Abhijit Mukherjee tweeted.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Mukherjee was a "towering statesman" who had guided him.

The central government has announced seven days of state mourning for the former president.



Mukherjee, President of India from 2012 to 2017, had kept his public interactions minimal since the coronavirus pandemic struck the country in January. He had undergone an angioplasty, a procedure to open blocked or narrowed coronary arteries, at the same hospital in 2014, according to a Hindustan Times report. He had not contested the 2017 Presidential election citing “advanced age and failing health”.

 

Mukherjee was awarded the Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian award, last year.

With a Heavy Heart , this is to inform you that my father Shri #PranabMukherjee has just passed away inspite of the best efforts of Doctors of RR Hospital & prayers ,duas & prarthanas from people throughout India !

I thank all of You 

— Abhijit Mukherjee (@ABHIJIT_LS) August 31, 2020
As a minister in the Congress-led UPA governments and the chairperson of more than 90 ministerial committees from 2004 to 2012, Mukherjee had overseen such reforms and programmes as the Right to Information, the Right to Employment, and setting up of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI).

 

Born in the village of Mirati in Birbhum district of West Bengal, Mukherjee pursued History, Political Science and Law courses from the Kolkata University before becoming a college teacher and then a journalist.

 

He held the important foreign, defence, commerce and finance portfolios as a Union minister across various Congress-led governments in the past. Before becoming finance minister for the first time as part of Indira Gandhi’s Cabinet in 1982, Mukherjee had served as a deputy minister for finance in 1973-74. Mukherjee also served on the board of governors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, Asian Development Bank and African Development Bank. He was also appointed the deputy chairman of the Planning Commission in 1991 during the time of P V Narasimha Rao’s government at the Centre and held that position for five years.


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