India has become intolerant says Hamid Ansari in parting shot

Hamid Ansari

The BJP criticised outgoing Vice President Hamid Ansari for his comment that there was a sense of insecurity among Muslims and said such a "petty" remark was not expected from someone in his position.BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya also wondered if Ansari was looking for "political shelter" after retirement. The party leaders said such comments did not suit his office's dignity.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who is also leader of the House, said it was "a nostalgic occasion" to bid farewell to Ansari "after completing 10 years as a very distinguished chairperson of this House".

The grand-nephew of former Congress president and freedom fighter M A Ansari, the VP - originally from Ghazipur in UP - was India's permanent representative to the United Nations.

He said that when his term started ten years ago, an eminent leader had advised him to keep his calm during the chaos in the Rajya Sabha and the suggestion served to be useful.

Ansari has not been a politician.




"But to me, every time such a comment appeared or came to my knowledge; I mean my first reaction was that, A: the person is ignorant, B: that he is prejudiced and C: he does not fit into the framework that India has always prided to itself on, which is to be accommodative society", he said.

Vice president Hamid Ansari cautioned on Thursday that if opposition parties are not allowed to freely criticise the government's policies a democracy runs the risk of turning into a tyranny on his last working day as the chairman of the Rajya Sabha. 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. "I am an Indian and that is it", he added.

He said the issue of Triple Talaq is a social aberration and the reform has to come from within the community. Modi further said Ansari did his best to uphold the Constitution.

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

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