Monday, December 11, 2006

Who Should Be The Next President Of India?

Who should be 12th President of India?
By next summer India would have elected its next President and the speculation has already moved in to top gear. I will also join the fray and put my down my two cents.

The next President of India should be
  1. A Woman: India never had a Woman President and this would send a strong message and might even act as the required catalyst for passing the women's reservation bill which has been languishing the in the Parliament for a while.
  2. A Christian: While there has been Muslim and Sikh Presidents, India hasn't had a Christian President. So, why not a Christian ?
  3. From North East: North East region of India doesn't have a good representation in the current federal power structure. This would send right signals to the rife torn region.
  4. Not a politician: Dr. Abdul Kalam, the first non-political President has fared well and India should continue to follow that route. He has brought in flair and some degree of independent thinking to the Rashtrapathi Bhavan.
It might not be possible to find a person to suit all of the above requirements. However, the following meet some of the criteria mentioned above.
Who Should the Next President of India?

JM Lyngdoh: He meets 3 of the 4 requirements and is eminently suitable for the job. Like Dr. Kalam, he has humble middle class upbringing with a strong sense of values. He did a commendable job as the Chief Election Commissioner of India for which he was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay award. So, my first preference is Mr. Lyngdoh. However, I don't see his name doing the rounds and he may not be in he radar screen of the major parties like Congress, BJP and Communists.

Dr. Abdul Kalam: Dr. Kalam is a great role model for countless youngsters and his very name inspires hope and aspirations of the young and the old alike. He has done well in his first term and has shown that he is man of his own and can't manipulated around. While this is commendable, it hasn't won him many friends from Congress. So, while, BJP might support his candidacy, Congress might not.

NR Narayanamurthy
: He is one of the founder of InfoSys and he needs no introduction. From, simple middle class roots, he has built an iconic company that continues to be the poster child of Indian IT companies. While he has many qualities that has made him a darling of the middle class, same qualities have made the politicians shun him. His views on Governance, transparency, reservation and stuff puts him squarely in the opposite camp of the political creed in India. So, his candidacy might not take off.

Who do you think should be the next President of India and why?


  1. My preference is for a female president, but can't think of anybody suitable. Do you have anybody in mind?

  2. I will anyday vote for Jayalalitha!!
    i would love to see Jaya as President.
    what T.N.Sheshan did to the post of CEC.. she will do it to the Presidency..
    Charlotte, NC

  3. Don't give ideas to Congress Ram. Otherwise there will be hunger strike by congress leaders asking for "soniaji" to become the president.

    I would like to have APJ Abdul Kalam to be given a second term. As you rightly mentioned, He has done his job very well.

  4. looks like, kalam is not inclined to get second term. PC Alexander might be a candidate..just a guess.

  5. Indira Nuthi or Narayanamurthy


  6. What India really needs is a face of modern India, nasal and oily politicians be damned. Narayanamurthy is an excellent candidate, but his experience with the Bangalore airport thing probably ended any small hope of a stint in politics. Abdul Kalam still tops out on the popularity charts, but for a post that has power only on paper, charisma and people skills is the need of the day.

  7. Nithya
    Female President would be good.. but no name comes to my mind.. that would meet the other criterias (2 or 3..

    Jayalalitha ? She doesn't meet 3 of criterias laid out.. Also, she is from TN.. even otherwise, she is not my favorite..

    Sonia.. that wouldn't work.. She has the foreigner tag that can't be shed easily..

    Dr. Kalam, yes I would go with him.. but he is not the front runner now.

    Indira Nuthi ? (You mean Indira Nooyi ? - then, she is not eligible.. She is US citizen)
    Narayanamurthy, Yes.. but again, he is not the favorite now..

    Absolutely.. Who would be your choice?

  8. Raman
    Indira Nooyi is currently touring India..

    I am not sure if 'dual' citizens would be eligible.. even if the constitution allows, she might not be politically acceptable..(like Sonia Gandhi for the Prime Ministership..)

  9. raman,
    In India there is no such thing as "dual citizen". you are either an IC or not. The OCI is a passport that gives you certain privileges that's about it. In no way it treats u as a citizen.

  10. What about Shashi Tharoor? If India wants to improve he is needed. Another option being we does not need a president at all.