Condoling the death of state’s former governor Dr PC Alexander, politicians across party lines said he was a bureaucrat and diplomat par excellence and a role model for any person holding a gubernatorial position in the country.
Alexander, 90, died at a hospital in Chennai on Wednesday morning.
Among his several landmark decisions was the one to invite the Shiv Sena-BJP combine to form the government in the state in 1995, despite the Congress being the single largest party in terms of seats.
Though he was under pressure from some quarters to invite the single largest party, Alexander asked the Sena-BJP alliance to form the government, the first non-Congress government in the state.
State Nationalist Congress Party president Madhukar Pichad, who became Opposition leader in the Sena-BJP regime, praised Alexander for taking all the right decisions. “When we (then unified Congress) did not have enough numbers, Alexander convinced (Sharad) Pawar to stay away from power. He instead invited the Sena-BJP and we readily agreed to sit in the Opposition.”
Alexander was the first governor, who helped the state remove regional imbalance through a constitutional provision, which till 1994 was not used at all for political reasons.
Former independent legislator BT Deshmukh, whose marathon fight for removing development backlog of the backward regions is legendary, told HT, “If I were to rate him, I will place him the first among all present and past governors in the country. Vidarbha and Marathwada are indebted to him for his sincere efforts.”
In his condolence message, governor K Sankaranaryanan said, “Dr Alexander will go down in the history of the state as one of the finest governors. He created benchmarks for fellow governors and future governors.”
Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan said, “Dr Alexander valued social equality.”