Members of Parliament on Sunday bid adieu to outgoing President Pranab Mukherjee at a gala ceremony in the Central Hall of Parliament as leaders recalled his contribution in upholding democratic values.
Eighty one-year-old Mukherjee was received by Vice President Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar at Parliament for the farewell ceremony.
In her speech, Mahajan said, “This is a solemn occasion for each one of us to express our profound respect to President Mukherjee.”
Ansari lauded Mukherjee for his “unshakable belief in the idea of India” and said he often appealed to the people to re-dedicate themselves to the democratic values of the country.
The outgoing president expressed gratitude to the parliamentarians for the farewell.
“After Independence, we undertook to promote fraternity, dignity and unity of the nation. These ideals became the lodestar for the country,” Mukherjee said.
He asked the members to avoid frequent disruptions in Parliament saying it hurt the opposition more.
“During my years in Parliament, I learnt that it stands for debate, discussion and dissent. I also learnt that disruptions hurt the opposition more,” he said.
Mukherjee also said the government should avoid the ordinance route as it should be reserved only for compelling circumstances.
“It should not be taken for matters being considered for discussion (in Parliament),” he added.
Mukherjee said, “As the President, I have tried to protect, preserve and defend the Constitution, not just in letter, but in spirit as well.”
He concluded by saying, “I leave this magnificent building with a rainbow of memories and a sense of fulfilment and happiness of having served the people of this country as their humble servant.”
President Pranab Mukherjee was given farewell by the MP's in the Central Hall of Parliament on Sunday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sonia Gandhi, Vice President Hamid Ansari and other members of Parliament were present in the farewell ceremony of Mukherjee. He will quit the highest office of the country formally on July 25.
Here are the highlights:
# I will carry with me fond memories of our association and his warm and courteous behaviour to me: President Pranab Mukherjee on PM Modi
#It is unfortunate that parliamentary time devoted to legislations has been declining, said outgoing President Pranab Mukherjee in farewell speech
#Recent passage of GST and its launch on July 1 is shining example of cooperative federalism and speaks volumes for maturity of India's Parliament, says President Pranab Mukherjee
# If I claim I am the creation of this Parliament, perhaps it will not be treated as immodesty: President Pranab Mukherjee in farewell speech
If I claim I am the creation of this Parliament, perhaps it will not be treated as immodesty: President Pranab Mukherjee in farewell speech pic.twitter.com/eJDyzL1HBR— ANI (@ANI_news) July 23, 2017
# Hamid Ansari, who served as vice-president for five years, calls the President of India a "consummate diplomat" in his farewell address, as he recounts a long and distinguished career.
# LS Speaker presented a book signed by MPs and her speech to President Mukherjee during farewell ceremony hosted in Parliament's Central Hall.
LS Speaker presented a book signed by MPs and her speech to President Mukherjee during farewell ceremony hosted in Parliament's Central Hall pic.twitter.com/Lt6FnBbdcv— ANI (@ANI_news) July 23, 2017
(With PTI Inputs)