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How the President Gave Intolerant Hardliners a Rap on the Knuckles

President Mukherjee has a few things to say about the blatant acts of intolerance across the country.

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Former BJP ideologue Sudheendra Kulkarni, with face blackened by Shiv Sena activists at a press conference. (Photo: PTI)

The President of India is not happy about the recent incidents of blatant intolerance that have made loud appearances on everyone’s newsreels.

The Rashtrapati Bhawan’s Twitter handle put out a series of statements that President Pranab Mukherjee made in Birbhum, West Bengal where he expressed his concern with regard to several incidents of intolerance in the past few weeks.

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From outrage against bans by state governments, student protests in FTII, eminent authors returning Sahitya Academy awards, to a student refusing to take his MBA degree from Smriti Irani, signs clearly point to the fact that the people of the country are not happy with self-righteous hardliners.

And perpetrators of these incidents can’t be given a free reign.

Prime Minister Modi took his time to speak about the Dadri issue despite scathing attacks from the Opposition. When he spoke, he said that it was an issue that the Samajwadi Party needed to deal with.

President Mukherjee, however, directly appealed to the collective conscience of the Indian people.

The President also pointed out the fact that tolerance has been the cornerstone of the Indian civilisation, and here ‘unity in diversity’ is not just a cliche, but something that is more deeply rooted.

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Mukherjee also pointed out that the Indian Constitution makes accommodations for all these differences and hence, intolerance can’t be the answer.

The last thing the President did was reference divinity in order to put an end to all the issues that threaten the very fabric of India – the hope that the power of positive forces would be able to defeat the divisive ones.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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