In 8 years as PM, today is Manmohan Singh's fourth birthday abroad

A workaholic, Singh usually shies away from celebrating his birthday.

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Once again it was a birthday abroad for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who turned 79 today during his trip to New York where he attended the UN General Assembly session.

It was the fourth time in his eight years of Prime Ministership that Singh is abroad on his birthday.

Today, he was en route to Frankfurt in Germany on his way back from New York.

A workaholic, Singh usually shies away from celebrating his birthday.

Singh, who was born in Gah in Punjab, which is now in Pakistan, says he does not know his actual date of birth but September 26 was given as birth day by his parents while getting him admitted in a school.

On previous such occasions, his birthday was celebrated on Air India One.

In his first year as Prime Minister in 2004, he celebrated his birthday mid-air on way to Geneva from New York on Air India's Boeing 747-400.

Singh then did not cut the two-and-a-half kg fruit cake specially made for the occasion but joined everyone in having a slice of it.

He had then told accompanying reporters "I really don't know my birthday. This is the date mentioned in my school records."  

Once again, four years later, Singh celebrated his birthday in Washington and the next year he turned another leaf in his life on air while returning from G20 summit in Pittsburgh in the US and heading to Geneva.

Singh was born to Sardar Gurmukh Singh and Amrit Kaur in 1932 in Gah of Punjab, which is now in Chakwal District of Pakistan.

The prime minister yesterday recieved birthday greetings from his senior-most Cabinet colleague Pranab Mukherjee in advance.

Mukherjee, who flew in to New York from Washington to have urgent consultations with the Prime Minister, greeted Singh a day in advance.

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