Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh lost the Lok Sabha election from
South Delhi in 1999 but he immediately returned Rs two lakh he had
taken from writer Khushwant Singh for hiring taxis saying he had not
This act of Prime Minister's integrity finds a mention in a new book
"Absolute Khushwant: The Low-Down on Life, Death and Most things
In-between" written by the 95-year-old author Khushwant Singh.
In the book written along with Humra Quraishi, a columnist, the
eminent author says, Manmohan Singh is the best Prime Minister India
has had, even rating him higher than Jawaharlal Nehru, the first
"I really got to know him at the
election he lost from South Delhi. This was in 1999", recounts
"I was surprised and impressed because
the son-in-law (of PM), whom my family knew, came to borrow some
money-just two lakhs-to hire taxis that were needed for campaigning.
They didn't have even that much to spare. I gave the money in cash,"
But days after the election, Manmohan Singh called him and asked for
an appointment. He went to see him with a packet.
"''I haven't used the money,'' he said and handed me the packet with
all the cash I had given his son-in-law. That kind of thing no
politician would do!," he said.
Khushwant Singh said, "When people talk of integrity, I say the best
example is the man who occupies the country's highest office."