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Is President's daughter ready to join politics?

December 02, 2013 18:13 IST

President Pranab Mukherjee's daughter Sharmishtha Mukherjee taking up campaigning for Delhi election has triggered speculations about her contesting the upcoming general elections.

"I belong to a political family. How can I be averse to politics," Mukherjee said when asked whether her taking part in the campaigning is an indication that she was not averse to joining active politics.

Talking to PTI, Mukherjee said she campaigned for the Congress because she "belongs to a Congress family" and also because she felt that it was her "duty" as she really thinks that Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has done a lot for the state.

To a direct question that whether her increased political activities mean that she would be contesting the next Lok Sabha polls, Mukherjee said, "Politics is much more about only contesting", but did not rule out the possibility.

47-year-old Mukherjee, who is classical kathak dancer, however said with a giggle that this dance of democracy called elections is "far more difficult".

"This is the second election in which I am campaigning. Before this, I had campaigned for my brother," she said.

Abhijeet Mukherjee, son of President Pranab Mukherjee, had won from family pocket borough Jangipur in Murshidabad district during bye-election in October last year. He had contested the seat on Congress ticket after it fell vacant when Pranab Mukherjee became President.

Ever since there have been speculations about the President's daughter joining active politics, a contention, which was earlier dismissed.

This is the first time, both, the party as well as Mukherjee, have given so clear indications of the possibility of a larger role for the President's daughter in Congress politics.

Sources in Congress said that Sharmishtha Mukherjee addressed four rallies in Delhi yesterday, including one each in RameshPark, Pandavnagar and Ganesh Nagar.

Before addressing rallies in presence of AICC general secretary in-charge for Delhi Shakeel Ahmed on Sunday, Mukherjee also shared the dais with Chief Minister Dikshit at two different places.

In the rallies, Mukherjee spoke both in Bangla and Hindi and party leaders introduced her as "the daughter of a very long-time leader of Congress Pranab Mukherjee (Congress ke bahut purane leader ki suputri)".

Party MP Abhijit Mukherjee has also been roped in by Congress to conduct door-to-door contact programmes in Bengali-dominated areas in the national capital.

However, Sharmishtha Mukherjee's increased participation has been watched with curiosity as this is the first time, she is participating in political rallies and meetings outside West Bengal. 

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