At a time when the row over appointment of Supreme Court judges and pressure on governors to quit have snowballed into major controversies, Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a long meeting with President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday.
This was also the duo’s first exclusive meeting after Modi took over the reins as the new PM in May.
Recently, the government saw itself in the middle of a controversy when the Chief Justice of India RM Lodha expressed his disappointment over the way the Centre handled the rejection of Gopal Subramanium’s candidature for SC judge’s chair.
The Centre’s alleged pressurizing of some governors appointed during the UPA regime to resign in the wake of change of government earned mixed reviews. Incidentally, the West Bengal governor’s resignation was accepted by Mukherjee on Thursday.
Apart from discussing issues of national concern, Modi also took a round of the Rashtrapati Bhavan and had lunch with the President.
Many parts of the President’s official residence have been renovated since Mukherjee took over in July 2012. The PM, reportedly appreciated the restoration work as he visited the Cabinet Room, Ashoka Hall, Durbar Hall, the museum and the library.
During the last few decades ministers have taken oath in Ashoka Hall. In the last few months, such events were shifted to Durbar Hall. Modi, however, had opted to hold the ceremony in the historic forecourt.
Former PM Manmohan Singh used to meet Mukherjee once a month. Sources suggested that Modi too, will meet the President on a time-bound manner.