NEW DELHI: Former President Pranab Mukherjee is all set to don the mantle of a teacher, giving lessons and valuable insights to the management students of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad.
Pranabda as he is fondly called will take six classes at IIM Ahmedabad beginning September and continue with his favourite teaching assignment in October and November as well, sources close to the former President said.
A veteran Parliamentarian who had presided over all important ministries like Finance, Commerce, Defence and External Affairs in the successive Congress governments, Mr. Mukherjee is known for his sharp memory and is a storehouse of knowledge on the government affairs, public policy, Constitutional matters, politics and Parliamentary and financial affairs.
Pranabda will take classes on “Public Policy” at IIM, Ahmedabad, an assignment which he gladly accepted as teaching remains one of his favourite passions apart from reading and writing. He has recently authored books on politics about coalition years, dramatic decade, turbulent years .
“I am 83 now and with the age I have slowed down in many things,’’ Mr. Mukherjee said with his characteristic charming smile.
After demitting office of the President of India a year ago, his daily routine keeps him busy with a lot of reading, meeting people from a variety of backgrounds, and writing. He is working on his next book which should be ready in another four to five months.
During his years in Rashtrapati Bhavan, Pranabda had taken classes on “Political History of India” in Sarvodaya Vidyalaya in the President’s Estate on the eve of Teachers’ Day which is celebrated on September 5 to mark the birthday of former President Dr Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan who himself was a distinguished teacher.
“I am not your President today, call me Mukherjee sir,” President Pranab Mukherjee had told the students of 11th and 12th grades at Sarvodaya Vidyalaya when he taught them nearly three years ago.
In his hour-long class Mr. Mukherjee had spoken to the students about his childhood, the writing of the Constitution and the first general election.
“Till today, I have the urge of teaching somewhere. A teacher gives himself to the students and the job of a student is to draw from him as much as possible. I am explaining history as I have seen it,” Mr Mukherjee had been quoted in news reports as having said.
Recalling his stint in the school, Pranabda had told students, “I was a naughty child. I was just an average student. I had to walk 5km for my school and I used to complain to my mother about the distance. She used to tell me that she had no other option and always advised me to work hard.”