Addressing the nation on his last day at office, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday said his life and tenure as the Prime Minister has been an ‘open book’ and, added that he has done his best to serve the country.
“I address you today for the last time as Prime Minister of India,” said Dr. Singh in his short address to the nation.
“As I have said on many occasions, my life and tenure in public office are an open book. I have always tried to do my best in serving this great nation of ours,” he added.
He also appealed to the people of the country to respect the judgement that they have delivered, and said that the just concluded elections have deepened the foundations of country’s democratic polity.
“Ten years ago, when I was entrusted with this responsibility, I entered upon it with diligence as my tool, truth as my beacon and a prayer that I might always do the right thing,” he said.
Crediting people for the country’s successes, Dr. Singh also said that there is still vast latent development potential in the country and everybody should collectively work hard to realize it.
“I wish the incoming government every success as it embarks on its task and pray for even greater successes for our nation,” he added.
Dr. Singh, the 13th Prime Minister of the country, will be tendering his resignation to President Pranab Mukherjee later today. He led the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government from 2004-2014.
On Friday, Dr. Singh congratulated Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi over his party’s win in the Lok Sabha elections.
The BJP-led NDA secured an absolute majority in elections for the 16th Lok Sabha by claiming 337 seats. Of these, the BJP won in 283 seats. Among the other 15 parties in the coalition, only the SHS (19 seats) and the TDP (16) managed to achieve double digit figures.
In contrast, the ruling UPA could manage to win only 58 seats. Of these, the Congress won 43, its worst electoral performance since 1977. The remaining nine members of the ruling coalition could manage only single digit results, with the NCP coming second with five seats, and the RJD with four.
Friday’s result was the largest anti-incumbency vote in India’s history. It was driven by a desire for change and anger against corruption and the sluggish economy fanned directly or indirectly by the Congress-led UPA regime, which was in power for a decade.
It also represented the people’s hope for a better India under BJP prime ministerial nominee Narendra Modi.