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What's in store for Pranab Mukherjee on July 25

Last updated on: July 24, 2012 12:52 IST

What's in store for Pranab Mukherjee on July 25

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Renu Mittal in New Delhi

At 11 am on July 25 President-elect Pranab Mukherjee will be ready and waiting at his Talkatora road residence having donned the new bandgala, which is being specially stitched for him.

A car from Rashtrapati Bhawan will arrive to take Pranabda on what will be a new journey for him. He would have travelled on that route hundreds of times in his long and distinguished political career, but this trip would be different as he would not be returning to his Talkatora Road residence where he has lived for decades.

After reaching Rashtrapati Bhawan, the President-elect would be escorted to the study where Pratibha Patil would greet him. After that the outgoing president would step out for her final guard of honour.

After that both Patil and Pranab would climb into the magnificent Rashtrapati Bhawan buggy, drawn by 6 horses.

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The buggy would take them to the exit gate where the Presidential limousine will await them for the ride to Parliament. Patil would sit to the right, as she is still the President, while Pranab would take the left side seat.

All along Rajpath (from Rashtrapati Bhawan to Parliament House) 1,100 personnel from the Army, Air Force and Navy will line up on both sides of the road.

Having reached the Parliament House, they would then be escorted to the Central Hall where the oath of office would be administrated to the new President.

Seated on the dais with Patil and Pranab would be Vice President Hamid Ansari and Chief Justice of India S H Kapadia.

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Home Secretary R K Singh would conduct the proceedings of the oath-taking ceremony. He will read out the notification from the Election Commission which states that Pranab Mukherjee has been declared elected as the President after which the chief justice would administer the oath of office to Pranab.

After this, Patil and Pranab would change seats and he would be seated in the chair of the President of India.

The newly sworn-in President Pranab would then deliver his first speech where he is expected to thank all those who voted for him, elaborate on his vision of India and his duties as the President.

It is learnt that Pranab da, himself a very able and experienced drafter, is writing his own speech. He has been reading up speeches of past presidents and is expected to formulate his own outlook on presidency.

Seated in the Central Hall would be a galaxy of political leaders from various political parties, chief ministers, family members (especially from West Bengal).

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Image: The Central Hall of Parliament


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What's in store for Pranab Mukherjee on July 25

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After the oath-taking ceremony, which is expected to last 45 minutes, both Pranab and Patil would return to Rashtrapati Bhawan in the limousine. This time around the seating order will change. Both the spouses would follow in a separate car.

Once at the Rashtrapati Bhawan, Pranab would take the guard of honour at the forecourt of the impressive 340-room mansion, which comprises a mini golf course, the Mughal gardens, a gymnasium and other sports facilities.

After that both Pranab and Patil would return to the study, where the former is likely to spend a great deal of time in the next five years of his presidency.

Pranab would then escort Patil out of Rashtrapati Bhawan and accompany her to 2, Tughlak Road -- her new residence where she will stay till her house in Pune will be completed. This was allotted to cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, who has refused the government accommodation.

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Image: The new Presidential ride


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What's in store for Pranab Mukherjee on July 25

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Pranab would then return to Rashtrapati Bhawan, but instead of the main building he would be spending the next couple of months in the guest house, as the living quarters at Rashtrapati Bhawan are expected to undergo renovations for the next president.

It is learnt that in the next few days after being sworn in, President Pranab is likely to meet a number of important persons which may fall under 'non customary duty' and may include legal luminaries, social activists and even Nobel awardees like Amartya Sen.

There is also speculation that a Cabinet reshuffle may be in the pipeline before the monsoon session of parliament begins on August 8. The buzz is that Rahul Gandhi may be inducted as a minister in Manmohan Singh's government. If that happens, then one of the important tasks for Pranab would be to swear in Rahul as a minister, at the outset of his innings as a president.

It is interesting that in an interview last year, Pranab had said clearly, "It is unlikely that I would be a minister in Rahul Gandhi's government".

Prophetic words which have come more than true!

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