Calling the first chief minister of the state, YB Chavan, the architect of modern Maharashtra, President Pranab Mukherjee said on Saturday that Chavan was a successful troubleshooter of the central government, and that his services were sought whenever the government was in trouble.
"He raised the morale of the Indian armed forces resulting in decisive victories in the war against Pakistan in 1965 and the Bangladesh liberation war against Pakistan in 1971. Same was the contribution as the chairman of the eighth planning commission in the early 80s. The precedents laid by him were followed by his successors in the planning commission," he added.
Speaking at the concluding ceremony of the year-long centenary celebration of YB Chavan at NCPA, Mukherjee said that Chavan was the only person to hold all the four important portfolios of home, external affairs, finance and defence at the Centre.
Mukherjee also revealed a little known fact that Chavan was the first recognised leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha. "Till 1977, the Lok Sabha had no recognised leader Of opposition as till then no party, other than the ruling Congress, had won more than 10% seats mandatory to claim the post," he said.
"Bombay was established as the financial capital of the country and cosmopolitan city in true sense. It was a tough task for Chavan to convince industrialists and stakeholders in the commercial sector that the investment climate will remain conducive, even after formation of the linguistic state. He succeeded in the task," he added.
E Sreedharan, the veteran administrator who spearheaded the construction of Delhi Metro and Konkan Railway, was felicitated for his work at the function, attended by governor K Sankarnarayanan, union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar, and CM Prithviraj Chavan.