When Sonia could not read Pranab’s handwriting on note

The P K M in question was Pranab Kumar Mukherjee,who was then general secretary of AICC.

Written by RAGHAV OHRI | Chandigarh | Updated: April 15, 2014 5:30 pm

In 1999,one “P K M” had expressed his difference of opinion over an amendment in the constitution of the the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC),sought by the then state party president Captain Amarinder Singh.

P K M’s handwriting was so illegible in a note sent to AICC president Sonia Gandhi,that she had to respond by writing — “I cannot read P K M’s remark”. Following this,the P K M’s handwritten note was typed,only after which,Gandhi okayed the amended constitution of PPCC.

The P K M in question was Pranab Kumar Mukherjee,who was then general secretary of AICC. The note was on Wednesday produced in the Punjab and Haryana High Court by the Punjab Congress in a bid to demonstrate the “professionalism” with which PPCC has been constituted.

The high court,on the last date of hearing,had asked the PPCC to show whether it is a registered body like the Indian National Congress. The query was put during the hearing of a PIL filed by PPCC,through its senior lawyer Anupam Gupta,challenging the “faulty” delimitation of wards in the upcoming panchayat elections in Punjab. A reply comprising over 500 pages was filed by the Congress on Wednesday,including this one-page note.

On March 26,1999,Amarinder had written to Gandhi: “Dear madam president,a special meeting of the PPCC executive,office bearers,MLAs and DCC presidents was held in Congress Bhawan,Chandigarh on March 25,1999. It considered the amendment in the Constitution of the Punjab Pradesh Congress.”

It added: “All the amendments have been endorsed except Article XII (1),which relates to the ex-officio members. An amendment is added in its end with the words ‘but these ex officio members will have no voting rights’. It is requested that the Constitution with the above mentioned amendment may kindly be accorded necessary approval so that it can be got printed before the commencement of elections.”

In response,a six-line note was written by Mukherjee on March 30,1999. It stated: “PCC constitution may be approved. However,the ex-officio member like CLP leader should not be denied the voting right.”

The file was put up before Gandhi,who in her handwriting noted on April 2,1999: “I cannot read P K M’s remark”. Following this,Mukherjee’s handwritten note was typed and on April 3,Gandhi wrote “ok” and approved the PPCC amended constitution.

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