Modi Begins Day One with Reverence
NEW DELHI: From an aggressive political campaigner to a vastly-changed, masterly Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, the man India voted to form a majority government for the first time in three decades, on Tuesday deftly slipped into his role as the Chief Executive of a nation of 1.27 billion people.
On a day he met the seven Heads of Saarc nations and Mauritius and the representative of the Bangladesh PM, who were his guests at Monday’s swearing-in ceremony, Modi took 45 minutes off his schedule to go and meet his immediate predecessor Manmohan Singh.
In a special gesture, Modi drove down to Manmohan’s new residence on 3, Motilal Nehru Marg and chatted with him for 45 minutes. The former PM had shifted to the new residence formally on Monday after Modi was sworn in as the country’s 15th Prime Minister.
Sources in the new PMO told Express that Modi’s visit was to “basically obtain feedback on the issues on hand” that are to be addressed by the new government and the PMO. Modi is yet to move into the Prime Minister’s official 7 Race Course Road(RCR) residence and is continuing to stay at the Gujarat Bhavan, though, he is expected to shift there in a few days from now once the place is refurbished, sources said.
Earlier in the day, Modi took to Twitter to pay his respects to Jawaharlal Nehru on the 50th death anniversary of the country’s first PM. “I pay my tributes to our first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru on his ‘punya tithi,” he tweeted.
An early riser, Modi reached the PMO at the Western end of the South Block on Raisina Hills, the seat of the Union Government, at 8 am and was received by the PMO officials, including his Principal Secretary Nripendra Mishra.
As Prime Minister, his first decision was to sanction an ex-gratia payment of `2 lakh each to the next of kin of those killed in Monday’s Gorakhdham Express train accident in UP. He also sanctioned `50,000 each to those seriously injured in the accident, both from the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund.