Tight schedule for President Pranab on first working day



New Delhi: Known to be a workaholic, Pranab Mukherjee had a tight schedule on Thursday on the first working day of his Presidency holding a series of meetings and receiving Vice President Hamid Ansari at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.

The day for 76-year-old Mukherjee, who was sworn in as the country's 13th President yesterday, began with a meeting with officials of the Rashtrapati Bhavan during which he was briefed by outgoing Secretary Christy Fernandez, official sources said.

Fernandez's successor Omita Paul was also present at the meeting.

The new President was given a brief overview of the functioning of various departments of the Presidential Secretariat.

Mukherjee, who has had an active political career spanning five decades, was a keen listener when officers from various departments were giving a briefing.

This was followed by a call on by Vice President Ansari and Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj.

Governors Ram Naresh Yadav(Madhya Pradesh), B L Joshi (Uttar Pradesh) and K Rosiah (Tamil Nadu) also called on Mukherjee in the forenoon.

In the afteroon, Defence Minister A K Antony had a meeeting with the President, who is also the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces.

Governors of Punjab, Nagaland, Uttrakhand and Meghalaya were also scheduled to meet the President in the evening.

Mukherjee, who is the first leader from Bengal to become President, moved to the Rashtrapati Bhavan yesterday after being administered the oath of office and secrecy.

The veteran leader, who has played significant roles in government, party and Parliament in his long political career, is known to have a long work schedule which sometimes lasted 16 hours a day.

PTI