India's ancient values important amid intolerance: President
| Monday, November 23, 2015 - 09:56
New Delhi: Underlining that pluralism and multi-culturalism were at the core of India's psyche, President Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday said the world was witnessing "the worst impulses of intolerance" and it was time to reinforce the values that bind together a diverse India.
Inaugurating the first-ever international conference of Indologists at Rashtrapati Bhavan, Mukherjee said the world was struggling to deal with the kind of hatred never seen earlier.
"We are, today, witnessing events without precedent: when the world is struggling to deal with the worst impulses of intolerance and hatred that mankind has ever witnessed," he told the gathering of Indian and foreign Indologists.
"At such a time, there can be no better recourse than to remind ourselves of the high values, written and unwritten samskaras, duties and the way of life that is the essence of India.
"This is the time to reinforce the civilizational values that bind together the complex diversity of modern-day India and promote them among our people and the world," he said.
The president has in recent times repeatedly referred to "intolerance". But on Saturday, he did not refer to any specific incident within the country.
Mukherjee exhorted the indologists to highlight India's pluralism and multi-culturalism rather than excessively dwelling on ancient times or merely fill with nostalgia about India's grand past.