Book account of how an individual saw political drama unfolding: Pranab

New Delhi, Oct 13 (IANS) Terming the 10 years of UPA rule under Congress as “successful”, former President Pranab Mukherjee said on Friday that his latest autobiography was an account of how an individual saw the political drama unfolding and tried to steer clear of any personal details.

Speaking on the occasion of release of his latest series of his autobiography “The Coalition Years: 1996-2012”, Mukherjee noted: “I cannot claim to have the objectivity of a historian, which I am not. I am a party activist…I have tried to not bring my personal life, my family or any personal matter into the narrative.”

“It is absolutely (an account of) how I looked at men and matters as an active political participant,” he added.

Mukherjee, who headed various Group of Ministers (GoM) and played a key role in managing coalition partners during the UPA rule, said: “The Congress successfully led the coalition of various parties and personalities for 10 years.”

He appreciated the idea of the publishers to get the book unveiled in the presence of major coalition partners of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) that ruled from 2004 to 2014 under the premiership of Manmohan Singh.

The book was formally released in the presence of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, Communist Party of India Marxist (CPI-M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, CPI General Secretary Sudhakar Reddy, DMK leader M.K. Kanimozhi and Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav.

The book is third in a series by Mukherjee. The earlier two volumes are “The Dramatic Decade: The Indira Gandhi Years” and “The Turbulent Years: 1980-1996”.

The latest books takes the narration forward from where the “Turbulent Years” left.

Mukherjee recalled how, barring a few years in between, the Congress pulled on its own strength before the coalition era came in 1996 when Deve Gowda became the Prime Minister followed by I.K. Gujral and then NDA led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Praising the book, Akhilesh Yadav said that it is like laying your hands on good notes before the examinations.

“So before the elections, we have got this book on coalition governments which may come handy,” he said.

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