Revealed: How Manmohan got the top job

Published on Sep 22, 2004 02:33 AM IST

When did Sonia Gandhi decide that she wouldn't take the job and that Manmohan Singh would be Prime Minister?

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PTI | By, New York

When did Sonia Gandhi decide that she wouldn't take the job and that Manmohan Singh would be Prime Minister?

An interesting twist was added to one of the more intriguing mysteries of recent Indian politics here in New York.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was asked by US TV host Charlie Rose whether he expected to be made Prime Minister. No, said Singh, because the mandate was clearly for Sonia Gandhi and the party wanted her to take the job.

When did she tell you that she wouldn't accept the post and that you would be her candidate? When Rose persisted with the question that has haunted Congress politicians for months, Singh gave an unexpected response: right after the results — when we knew that we would form the government.

Singh has never ever said this before. And though Sonia Gandhi had confided to friends even before the results were in that Manmohan would be the Congress PM, neither of them has ever come out and declared this openly on the record before.

The timing of Sonia's approach to Manmohan suggests that the explanations offered by her supporters — that the she could not announce that she did not want the job till the coalition was in place — may well be right. It suggests that even when she was elected leader of the Congress

Parliamentary Party, she knew that she would not be Prime Minister and that Manmohan Singh would lead the country.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Why hide the papers? Why keep the conspiracy theories related to Netaji Subhas Bose’s death alive? And why deny India the truth about the death of one of its great freedom fighters?

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