This has come to light in a book entitled, 'The Chinar Leaves', written by veteran Congress leader and close aide of the Gandhi family ML Fotedar, who claims that when he met President Venkataraman to discuss the political situation in the wake of VP Singh's resignation in 1990, the President told him emphatically that Rajiv Gandhi should support Mukherjee.
"I met President Venkataraman and discussed the political situation with him. I told him that under the present circumstances only the Congress Party could take along with it every section of society and provide a strong and stable government”, Fotedar says in his book.
"I requested him to invite Rajivji to head the next government as he was the leader of the single largest party in the Lok Sabha. On this the President directed me, with an emphasis of authority, that I may put it to Rajiv Gandhi that if he supported Mr Pranab Mukherjee to be Prime Minister, he (the President ) would administer the oath of office to him that same evening," the book read.
The Harper Collins publication, due for release soon, also highlights how Mukherjee along with PV  Narasimha Rao and Venkataraman were once considered by Indira Gandhi as those who could take over the Congress party after her until of course she decided to bring her son Rajiv Gandhi into politics as her political heir.

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