‘Pliant’ Patil, India’s Next President
Sudha Ramachandran writes in Asia Times:
Pratibha Patil is poised to become India’s next president in voting this Thursday. Her victory is a foregone conclusion; the numbers are in her favor to make her India’s first female head of state.
A former deputy Speaker of the Upper House of India’s Parliament, the Rajya Sabha, Patil, now 72, was a practicing lawyer before she joined politics. She has held five consecutive terms as a legislator in her home state of Maharashtra and has held ministerial portfolios several times. And she has been governor of Rajasthan for the past three years. Besides that, she has been involved in social work, founding banks, colleges and schools for the poor and economically disadvantaged women.
But skeletons have been tumbling out of the Patil family cupboard ever since the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA) coalition put her up as its candidate in the presidential race.