Mussoorie (PTI): India's pluralism cannot be substituted by "uniformity", President Pranab Mukherjee asserted on Friday and said any such experiment would not succeed even if "imposed" as seen in the past.
Addressing the 91st Foundation Course of the All India Services (AIS) in Mussoorie, Mukherjee also praised the "exemplary" maturity shown by the Indian electorate in giving a clear verdict to a political party at the Centre after 30 years, shunning "opportunistic" political coalitions.
"Your responsibility as future policy makers is to strengthen the system which has been established with the objective that we cannot substitute our plural characters, our pluralism by uniformity. Straitjacket uniformity, even if it is imposed, it will not succeed as it has been proved on several occasions," Mukherjee said.
Speaking on the wisdom of the Indian electorate, he said people have been discharging their responsibility and it was incumbent upon the "elected" to transform their aspirations into reality.
Mukherjee said people decided that it was "enough to make experiments with capricious, selfish, opportunistic political coalitions" just to form a government, so after 30 years they gave a "clear political verdict" in favour of a political party.
"It is not important which political party. This is the confidence of the people. It is important that how mature Indian electorates are," he said.
Departing from a prepared speech, Mukherjee went on to speak on the challenges faced by India, especially the period post Partition based on "religion" and the decision of the Constituent Assembly to choose secularism and adult suffrage right after that.
Mukherjee had on Thursday launched a stinging attack on the Opposition over parliamentary paralysis and said the House was not a place for dharna and disruption which amounted to "gagging of majority" by the minority.
He told parliamentarians that they are meant to discuss and transact business and not disrupt. —PTI