Rejecting controversy over his book, former President A P J Abdul Kalam on Monday asserted that Sonia Gandhi was "Constitutionally" eligible to be appointed as the Prime Minister when Congress emerged as the largest party in 2004 elections.
"I have said already in the book because Constitutionally Supreme Court says that she (Gandhi) is a citizen. So, Constitutionally if the majority party says she should be appointed. But she did not... she put Manmohan Singhji. There is no controversy in my mind," he told PTI in Noida.
Kalam was reacting on the sidelines of a function when asked about the controversy generated by his book 'Turning Points' because of the mention that he was ready to swear in Gandhi as the Prime Minister despite pressure from various political leaders before she nominated Singh.
NDA Convenor and JD(U) president Sharad Yadav on Sunday hit out at Kalam, saying "his conscience has woken up late. It is for self-aggrandisement. We used to respect him a lot but now are very saddened after such comments."
Earlier, BJP had also criticised for the comments.
Kalam's stand on the political situation after the Lok Sabha elections lifted the veil on an episode that has been intensely speculated upon that he was reluctant to appoint the Italian-born Gandhi as the country's Prime Minister.
The former President says in the book that he was almost certain that Gandhi would head the UPA government but Rashtrapati Bhavan had to rework the appointment letter after the Congress chief nominated Singh as the Prime Minister.