New Delhi, Oct 13: Former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh on Friday made a candid admission that he thought former President Pranab Mukherjee had reasons to be upset when he was appointed as the prime minister of the country in 2004.

He said that Pranab Mukherjee was senior to him in the Congress party, but Sonia Gandhi chose him to lead the government. He said Pranab Mukherjee knew that neither he (Manmohan Singh) had the choice or any part in the decision. Dr Singh said that Pranab Mukherjee was a politician by choice and it came naturally to him.

He was speaking at the launch function of Mukherjee’s new book, The Coalition Years: 1996-2012.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi had stunned everyone when she appointed former finance minister Manmohan Singh the prime minister of the country when UPA came to power in 2004. Pranab Mukherjee was thought to be the natural choice for the post after Sonia recused herself from the job after the principal opposition, BJP, created ruckus at her being from Italy. Pranab Mukherjee, considered Congress party’s man troubleshooter, had had several important portfolios in UPA 1 and UPA 2 including defence and finance.

The Congress party helped Pranab Mukherjee in becoming the President of the country in 2012. He retired in July this year.