Dissent essential to democracy, but no place for violence: VP Naidu at Goa Univ Convocation

New Delhi: The Vice President of India, M Venkaiah Naidu today, urged the world community to come together to take strong action against the countries which are aiding and abetting terrorism. Addressing the 32nd Annual Convocation of Goa University in Panaji, the Vice President said that terrorism is the enemy of humanity and denounced the actions of one of our neighbours in promoting cross-border terrorism.

While reiterating that India wanted peaceful coexistence with all its neighbours, the Vice President referred to the decision of the global watchdog, Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to keep a neighbouring country in the grey list and said that it was a grim reminder to the global community to exert greater pressure and hold that country to account on terrorism. Naidu said that there is no place for violence in a democracy and asked the youth to shun negativism and join the forces of growth.

Stating that dissent was an essential feature of democracy, the Vice President, however, cautioned that nobody has a right to speak against the nation. Naidu expressed happiness that in recent times people are talking about the importance of the Constitution. Calling it a positive sign, he said that every citizen must follow the Constitution in letter and spirit and adopt constitutional methods to achieve his or her goals. Stating that rights and responsibilities go together, he also reminded people the need to perform their duties.

The Vice President said that liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation have opened up innumerable opportunities and our universities should educate and skill Indian youth to meet these 21st-century requirements.

Stating that India was known as ‘vishwa guru’ in ancient times, Naidu exhorted Indian universities to again strive to make India knowledge hub of the world. He also stressed the need for a multidisciplinary approach to R&D and said that working in silos will not yield the desired results.

Stating that this convocation was not the end of education, Naidu told the graduating students that learning is a life-long process and they should keep learning new things in life. Maintaining that no nation can progress until its women are educated, the Vice President expressed happiness over the fact that out of 30,000 students enrolled in Goa University, 60% are women. Every woman should be given opportunities on par with that of men, he stressed. He cited the examples great women scholars of ancient India such as Gargi and Maitreyi and said that respect for women is at the core of Indian culture.

Naidu urged the students to imbibe the age-old values of Indian culture such as – share and care, “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” and respect for nature. Climate change and global warming are two of the biggest challenges the world is facing today, he said and asked all nations have to step up their efforts to protect the environment and reduce carbon footprint.

He expressed happiness that India is now the fifth-largest economy of the world, and we are on a path to become a $5 trillion economy. However, calling for a sustainable path for development, the Vice President appealed to everyone to respect and live in harmony with nature.

The Vice President urged the world community to come together to take strong action against the countries which are aiding and abetting terrorism.

The Governor of Goa, Satya Pal Malik; Chief Minister of Goa, Pramod Sawant; and the Vice Chancellor of Goa University, Varun Sahni were among the dignitaries who graced the occasion.

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The ID Staff

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