Former president Pranab Mukherjee today lauded the leadership of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the country's "remarkable development" during his visit here.
Former president Pranab Mukherjee today lauded the leadership of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the country’s “remarkable development” during his visit here. He said books appeared to be his main companion in his “retired life” as he called on Hasina a day after his arrival on a four-day private visit to Bangladesh. “I did politics for a long time. Now I am passing time reading books,” Hasina’s press secretary Ihsanul Karim quoted Mukherjee as telling the prime minister as she hosted a lunch in his honour at her ‘Ganobhaban’ residence. “I was in a constitutional post as the Indian president and also in parliament. After retirement, I’ve enough time to read,” Mukherjee added. Officials familiar with the courtesy call said Hasina received the former president at the entrance of her official residence as he reached along with his daughter and Congress leader Sharmishtha Mukherjee.
Mukherjee would join a Bengali literature conference and receive an honorary doctorate degree to be conferred upon him by state-run Chittagong University in the southeastern port city during his visit. A PMO spokesman said Mukherjee appreciated Bangladesh’s remarkable development in socio-economic sectors under Hasina’s leadership, saying the scenario had now made the country an attractive place for investment. He recalled that his first foreign tour as Indian president was to Bangladesh in 2013 referring to his personal links to the neighbouring country. Mukherjee, 82, served as the 13th president of India from 2012 until 2017.