Deeply disturbed over increase in bigotry under Modi government: Gopalkrishna Gandhi

Gandhi, 72, who faces the ruling National Democratic Alliance''s candidate M. Venkaiah Naidu in the Aug 5 vice-presidential election, also feels that there is need to be vigilant against cow vigilantism.

IANS
New Delhi, Publish Date: Aug 4 2017 12:11PM | Updated Date: Aug 4 2017 12:11PM
Deeply disturbed over increase in bigotry under Modi government: Gopalkrishna GandhiGandhi, 72, who faces the ruling National Democratic Alliance''s candidate M. Venkaiah Naidu in the Aug 5 vice-presidential election.
The opposition's vice-presidential candidate Gopalkrishna Gandhi says that he is deeply disturbed over increase in bigotry and suppression of dissent under the Modi government.
 
Gandhi, 72, who faces the ruling National Democratic Alliance's candidate M. Venkaiah Naidu in the Aug 5 vice-presidential election, also feels that there is need to be vigilant against cow vigilantism. 
 
"I am deeply disturbed over the increase in bigotry, intolerance and the direct and indirect suppression of dissent. This is not democratic. This is not republican," Gandhi said in an interview to IANS. 
 
Answering a query on incidents of cow vigilantism, Gandhi said, "Be vigilant against vigilantism, our former President said. I believe that."
 
Gandhi said the objective of his contesting elections was to offer a choice to the electors worthy of their attention. "And to respond to the invitation from several parties to contest as an independent candidate standing for the values of our republican constitution."
 
Asked about his assessment of Venkaiah Naidu, who is seen to have a clear edge in the election in which MPs vote through secret ballot, Gandhi said: "He (Naidu) is a veteran political leader with vast experience of public affairs."
 
Gandhi, who is a former civil servant, diplomat and governor, said he had written to the NDA MPs saying that he was not asking for their votes but seeking their "kind attention" for his candidature. 
 
"I have requested them to look upon me not as an adversary but a fellow citizen who believes in our country's diversity and pluralism and in the criticality of democratic rights," he said. 
 
On his prospects in the vice-presidential election, Gandhi said: "Some contests are valuable in themselves, irrespective of winning or losing."
 
Asked about the role he sees for himself if does not win the election, Gandhi said: "Life is larger than elections." 
 
Gandhi did not comment on his nephew Shrikrishna Kulkarni writing an open letter against his nomination as candidate of Congress and some other major opposition parties. 
 
Asked about the prospects of the opposition in the 2019 general election, Gandhi said people will use the opportunity wisely and noted that every election conducted in freedom and with fairness is in itself a victory. 
 
To a question about the possibility of Rahul Gandhi being the pivot of opposition unity in 2019 elections, Gandhi said the people were their own pivot. 
 
Asked what "nationalism" meant to him, Gandhi said nationalism and patriotism were natural instincts and their manipulation was outrageous. 
 
Gandhi also said he agreed with former President Pranab Mukherjee on his advice against taking the ordinance route repeatedly and against disruptions in the parliament. 
 

Latest News

  1. Three villagers missing after snow storm hits Bhaderwah-Basohli highway
  2. Three villagers missing after snow storm hits Bhaderwah-Basohli highway
  1. Power connections to be linked with ration, Aadhar cards: Dy CM
  2. Power connections to be linked with ration, Aadhar cards: Dy CM
  1. Cop donates blood voluntarily after receiving distress call, saves life
  2. Cop donates blood voluntarily after receiving distress call, saves life
  1. Avalanche warning for some districts in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh
  2. Avalanche warning for some districts in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh
  1. Governor summons Joint Session of Legislature on January 2
  2. Governor summons Joint Session of Legislature on January 2
  1. Private tuition by teachers: Govt clarifies, says teachers must seek permission
  2. Private tuition by teachers: Govt clarifies, says teachers must seek permission
  1. Deadline to link Aadhaar with bank accounts extended till March 31
  2. Deadline to link Aadhaar with bank accounts extended till March 31
  1. Pakistan to reveal CPEC plan on December 18
  2. Pakistan to reveal CPEC plan on December 18
  1. December 15 public rally in Anantnag litmus test for government: JRL
  2. December 15 public rally in Anantnag litmus test for government: JRL
  1. Private schools to start 'free' remedial classes from December 16: PSAK
  2. Private schools to start 'free' remedial classes from December 16: PSAK
  1. Clashes erupt in Pulwama village after forces launch search operation
  2. Clashes erupt in Pulwama village after forces launch search operation
  1. PM has helped me the most, don't hate him: Rahul Gandhi
  2. PM has helped me the most, don't hate him: Rahul Gandhi
  1. US embassy unlikely to move to Jerusalem before 2020: Tillerson
  2. US embassy unlikely to move to Jerusalem before 2020: Tillerson
  1. Ten injured after passenger vehicle plunges into nallah in Anantnag
  2. Ten injured after passenger vehicle plunges into nallah in Anantnag
  1. Video | Weather likely to improve from tomorrow: Sonam Lotus
  2. Video | Weather likely to improve from tomorrow: Sonam Lotus
  1. Burglars loot store in north Kashmir's Kupwara
  2. Burglars loot store in north Kashmir's Kupwara
  1. Jammu and Kashmir: ‘Milap’ editor Rishi Suri appointed as media consultant in CM’s secretariat
  2. Jammu and Kashmir: ‘Milap’ editor Rishi Suri appointed as media consultant in CM’s secretariat
  1. Speeding vehicle crushes six-year-old to death in Poonch
  2. Speeding vehicle crushes six-year-old to death in Poonch
  1. Army calls HAWS rescue team to trace missing soldiers in Gurez
  2. Army calls HAWS rescue team to trace missing soldiers in Gurez
  1. 5 suspected drug peddlers arrested in Jammu
  2. 5 suspected drug peddlers arrested in Jammu
  1. Jammu and Kashmir govt to regularize 60,000 daily wagers, casual labourers
  2. Jammu and Kashmir govt to regularize 60,000 daily wagers, casual labourers
  1. Poor visibility affects air traffic in Kashmir
  2. Poor visibility affects air traffic in Kashmir
  1. Jammu and Kashmir govt looting money meant for minorities: BJP leader
  2. Jammu and Kashmir govt looting money meant for minorities: BJP leader
  1. Jammu-Srinagar highway remains closed
  2. Jammu-Srinagar highway remains closed
  1. Kashmir freezes at sub-zero temperatures
  2. Kashmir freezes at sub-zero temperatures