Prime Minister Narendra Modi is clearly intent on sending out the signal that the animosities of the electoral battlefield are over: on Monday, shortly after President Pranab Mukherjee addressed a joint session of Parliament on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi walked over to shake hands with Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, who was seated in the eighth row of the Central Hall of Parliament along with party seniors Motilal Vora and Jairam Ramesh. The two men exchanged a few words.
This comes close on the heels of the first day of Parliament on June 4, when Mr Modi walked across in the Lok Sabha to greet opposition leaders seated in the first row. As he reached the last block, Congress president Sonia Gandhi walked up: the two leaders folded their hands in a namaste and stood speaking cordially for several moments.
On Monday, just before the President rose to speak, Ms Gandhi was spotted, having an animated conversation with BJP leader L K Advani who was seated next to her in the packed Central Hall; just as union finance minister Arun Jaitley was seen engaging former prime minister Manmohan Singh in pleasantries – indeed, Mr Jaitley had even written sympathetically and warmly about Dr Singh in his blog after the elections.