Indian Vice President Ends his Term with Criticisms to Intolerance

Hamid Ansari

Condemning the remark, BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain said there is no better country for Muslims than India. He is still a vice president and such comments do not suit his office's dignity. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Ansari has done his best to uphold the Constitution.

Asked specifically about his speech on Sunday in which he spoke about a nationalism with cultural commitments at its core being perceived as the most conservative and illiberal form of nationalism, and whether the remark was about the mood of the country in 2017, he replied: "Oh, absolutely".

"Breakdown of Indian values, breakdown of the ability of the authorities at different levels in different places to be able to enforce what should be normal law enforcing work and overall the very fact that the Indianness of any citizen is being questioned is a disturbing thought", he said in an interview to a television channel.

The former vice-chancellor of the Aligarh Muslim University - from where he completed his doctorate - was the chairman of the National Commission for Minorities post retirement when the United Progressive Alliance government and the Left named him as their candidate for the vice presidential post. He has made political comments as he is retiring. Hardly a day goes by without us reading about cow vigilante attacks, earlier we read about lynchings, we have read about beef bans, people who refuse to say "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" have been publically told that they should leave the country, there have been accusations of love jihad, ghar wapsi campaigns and even killings of rationalists.

Vice-President Hamid Ansari was today accorded a warm farewell by leaders from across the political spectrum on his last day as Rajya Sabha Chairman.

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders sharply reacted to outgoing Vice President Dr Hamid Ansari's statements expressing concern over the "growing insecurity among minorities, specifically the Dalits, Muslims and Christians".

"I condemn his comments".

"I confess I had no difficulty in benefitting from this eminently sensible counsel", Ansari said. That's all. I mean a marriage has to be recognised on certain occasions by the system of the state.

He said the courts do not have to step in as the reform has to come from within the community.

To a poser on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, Mr Ansari said, "the problem has always primarily been a political problem".

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