India

India President Pranab Mukherjee no longer 'His Excellency'

Pranab Mukherjee
Image caption Pranab Mukherjee will now be referred to as "Mr President"

India's President Pranab Mukherjee has cleared a new set of protocols by which he will no longer be addressed as "His Excellency" within the country.

The president felt this was "something that needs to be reformed" as he is an elected leader in a republic, his press secretary Venu Rajamony told the BBC.

Under the new rules, Mr Mukherjee will be referred to as "Mr President".

He would be called Excellency only when he interacts with foreign leaders "as is customary international practice".

Mr Mukherjee was elected as the Indian President in July.

"In the Indian constitution everyone is equal under the law, and so the president felt the protocols needed a fresh look," Mr Rajamony said.

"This was a routine review and reform of the protocols by the new president," he added.

Mr Mukherjee has also asked his office to organise all his functions within the Rashtrapati Bhavan [Presidential Palace] to avoid the "inconvenience caused to the public during his movement within the city and in order to reduce the burden on police and other agencies", a statement on the president's website said.

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