Diversity, plurality and tolerance are “core values of our civilisation: President Pranab Mukherjee’s statement at Rashtrapati Bhavan – New Delhi

In those moments when questions emerge about the fragility of the state’s constitutional principles — over what has transpired since the Dadri lynching and the killing of Kannada scholar M.M. Kalburgi, for example — it is incumbent on high constitutional functionaries to rise to the occasion and seek to answer them. These incidents have triggered a response from India’s intellectuals who have earned recognition, with a string of litterateurs returning their Sahitya Akademi awards, concerned about the silence of the august body over rising intolerance. […]

It is in this context that President Pranab Mukherjee’s statement a week ago at Rashtrapati Bhavan, where he underlined the need to retain diversity, plurality and tolerance as the core values of our civilisation, came as a balm. The President later re-stated those sentiments on foreign soil – in Israel, speaking to politicians in the Jewish state, suggesting that “religion should not be a basis for a state”. […]

Secularism is a bedrock of India’s Constitution, and what needs to be debated is the means to achieve the separation of religion and the state. […]

Source: “Take the cue from the President” – The Hindu, October 16, 2015
Address: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/take-the-cue-from-the-president/article7766516.ece
Date visited: 24 November 2020

[I]t was by reading and speaking to Tagore that these founders of modern India, Gandhi and Nehru, developed a theory of nationalism that was inclusive rather than exclusive. Tagore’s [collected lectures on the subject of] Nationalism should be mandatory reading in today’s climate of xenophobia, sectarianism, violence and intolerance.

Source: Ramachandra Guha, Introduction to the 2017 Penguin ed. of Nationalism by Rabindranath Tagore
URL: https://www.worldcat.org/title/nationalism/oclc/1099200491
Date visited: 24 November 2020

Members of Sidi (Sidhi) community performing during the 21st World Adivasi Day
Photo credit © The Hindu | Full report >>

M.T. Shiva Kumar, The Hindu, 

Urging the Union and all State governments to protect the constitutional rights of the tribal people, members of the tribal and indigenous communities passed a resolution listing out their various demands at Ramanagaram on Sunday.

The Karnataka Adivasi Rakshana Parishad, a tribal welfare organisation, had organised a meet of tribals near the Government College on Bengaluru-Mysuru highway in the town in connection with 21st World Adivasi Day.

Members of 50 tribal communities from across the State, owing allegiance to the parishad, attended the meet. […]

The State government should honour the achievers in the tribal communities with ‘Adivasi Siri’ award and constitute a board/corporation for the welfare of tribal people, was one of their demands. The others included launch of special schemes to uplift the primitive tribes ‘Jenu Kuruba’ and ‘Koraga’, announcing support price for forest goods, and construction of ‘Adivasi Bhavan’ in all the taluks and district centres.

The meet also urged the Union government to accord the status of ‘Primitive Tribe’ to Chenchu (residing in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana), Irular (Tamil Nadu), Kathodi/Kathakari (Gujarat and Maharashtra), Kattunayakan (Kerala and Tamil Nadu), Thoda (Tamil Nadu) and some other tribes. […]

Cultural programme

Members of the Siddi [Sidhi], Jodugatte Irulaiga, Pardi, Malekudiya and some other communities mesmerised the audience with their scintillating performances of various forms of art. […]

Professor K.M. Metry of Hampi Kannada University and parishad president M. Krishnaiah were among those present.

Source: Tribal people demand protection of their rights – The Hindu
Address: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/tribal-people-demand-protection-of-their-rights/article7520388.ece
Date visited: 24 November 2020

[Bold typeface added above for emphasis]

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