Questioning love for India a "disturbing trend", Says Outgoing Vice President Ansari

A democracy is likely to degenerate into tyranny if it does not allow the opposition groups to criticise fairly, freely and frankly the policies of the government. Even after retirement from service, Ansari had mostly worked with the Minority Commission and Aligarh Muslim University.

Further during his speech, Ansari compared the position of the Rajya Sabha chairman with an umpire or a referee and said, "The chair is like an umpire in Cricket or referee in Hockey, witnessing the play without becoming a player".

Asked in an interview why he thought Indian values were "suddenly" breaking down, Vice-President Hamid Ansari answered: "Because we are a plural society that for centuries, not for 70 years, has lived in a certain ambience of acceptance".

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He also said that "a democracy is distinguished by the protection it gives to minorities".

Trinamool Congress MP Derek O'Brien applauded Ansari's decision to extend the sessions of Rajya Sabha by one hour, giving each speaker an extra three minutes to speak. Observing you I saw mannerisms of a career diplomat. But during these 10 years, you had to deal with a different kind of responsibility (in running the House).

Earlier in the day, BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi told ANI that there is no better country than India for Muslims and Ansari should check the facts as in which government Muslims felt more insecure. "The character of this House is that things start with a lot of acrimonious debate, noise, disruptions but eventually you would have seen during your tenure that nothing remains indefinitely held up", he said.

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The PM said that Ansari was leaving behind "great memories" and his "contributions have been important".

Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad also wished Ansari the best and said he was grateful to the "best" Chairman compared to the others. From all I hear from different quarters, the country.

The Prime Minister said that Shri Ansari's family has been in public life for generations.

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In hard-hitting remarks during an interview to Rajya Sabha TV, he ascribed the spate of vigilante violence, mob lynchings, beef bans and "Ghar Wapsi" campaigns to a "breakdown of Indian values" and to the "breakdown of the ability of the authorities" to enforce the law.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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