Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday extended birthday greetings to Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi on her 73rd birthday and prayed for her long and healthy life.
"Birthday wishes to Sonia Gandhi ji. Praying for her long life and good health," the Prime Minister wrote on Twitter.
Both Modi and Sonia, who are political rivals, have targetted each other on various occasions over several issues. Despite the political differences, Sonia had also sent birthday greetings to Prime Minister Modi in Septemeber and wished him a "healthy, happy and long life".
Several Congress leaders have also posted birthday greetings for their party chief, praising her for her leadership skills and keeping the party's ideology high.
"Warm birthday greetings to Sonia Gandhi. She refuses to get cowed down by adversities and keeps the flag of INC India and its ideology high. Respects for her always," Congress leader Pawan Khera tweeted.
Taking to Twitter, former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah said: "Best Wishes to INC India President Smt. Sonia Gandhi on her birthday. I wish her good health and long life. Her leadership qualities, commitment to the party, vision for development, and concern for marginalised shall always be the guiding force for us."
"The longest-serving Congress President, Sonia Gandhi's exemplary strength of character has inspired generations of Congress leaders. Her strength, dignity, compassion and grace has united us and made us strong. We wish her a very happy birthday," a tweet from the party's official Twitter handle said.
DMK president MK Stalin, while wishing the Congress chief, said that under her leadership, the Congress party has made "important and telling contributions to protecting the secular and federal fabric of the country."
Sonia is not celebrating her birthday in view of the incidents of crime against women in the country.
Her decision comes after widespread outrage over the gang-rape and murder of a veterinary doctor in Telangana, whose charred body was found later. In a similar incident that triggered country-wide anger, a rape victim was set ablaze by the accused in Uttar Pradesh's Unnao while she was on her way for a court hearing in the case. She breather har last at a Delhi hospital on Friday night.For Gandhi, this is not the first time that she will not be celebrating the occasion.In 2014, she did not celebrate her birthday in view of terror and Naxal attacks in Jammu and Kashmir and Chhattisgarh, respectively. Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi's wife, Sonia was born on December 9, 1946 in a small village near Vicenza in Italy. She is the longest-serving Congress president as per the party's official website.
Sonia Gandhi got married to Rajiv Gandhi in 1968. She took over the reins of Congress in 1998 as the party president, seven years after her husband's assassination.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)