Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh has written a letter to Presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee after receiving his resignation letter on Tuesday, saying that "the government owes a deep debt of gratitude to him."
Manmohan Singh said that he has forwarded his resignation to Rashtrapatiji with the recommendation to accept it with immediate effect and thanked the veteran Congress leader for his invaluable contribution.
"Our government owes a deep debt of gratitude to you for your invaluable contribution to its work over the last eight years. It is a testimony to your extraordinary abilities and your stature in public life that you have carried on onerous range of responsibilities with ease and accomplishment," said PM in the letter.
"Our colleagues in the Cabinet and I have benefitted from your wise counsel on innumerable occasions and we will all deeply miss your presence amidst us. We hope to see you occupy the exalted position of President next month and are confident that our country and people will continue to benefit from your wisdom, knowledge and decades of experience in public life," he added.
Pranab Mukherjee resigned as the finance minister on Tuesday to contest in the upcoming Presidential polls.
The Congress party officially announced Pranab Mukherjee as its Presidential candidate in spite of its ally Trinamool Congress openly opposing his candidature. Having got the support of the Samajwadi Party and other political parties, he is expected to win the elections comfortably.
Pranab Mukherjee will contest the Presidential elections against former Lok Sabha speaker P.A. Sangma, who is supported by the Bharatiya Janata Party, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and Biju Janata Dal (BJD).
The 14th Presidential election will be held on July 19, 2012, with the term of office of Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil, President of India, ending on July 24, 2012.