Breaking silence on rising intolerance, Union finance minister Arun Jaitley appealed for calm and restraints, and asked people to engage in “debate, not vandalism.” He said there has to be a proper “civilised mode” of discussing and debating issues.
In the aftermath of recent series of incident, the BJP leader said, “All right-thinking sections will have to distance themselves from these kind of methodologies.”
The finance minster said that those using these methods must also “introspect” whether they are adding to the quality of Indian democracy or are they really reducing the credibility of India as a country before the yes of the world itself.
Speaking to reporters, the minister said it is quite possible that in a large country like India there may be “divergent views” on many subjects. “But we had a tradition of civility in conveying those different opinions. Also particularly because some of these issues are extremely serious,” he said.
He said some issues can reflect on inter-community relations while others can reflect on sensitive areas such as Jammu and Kashmir. “There are issues which impinge on our relations with our neighbouring countries and therefore there has to be a proper civilised mode of discussing and debating these issues,” he said.
BJP ally Shiv Sena, recently, stormed the BCCI headquarters and blackened the face of Sudheendra Kulkarni in Mumbai. Asked about its own ally Shiv Sena indulging in the act, Jaitley said, “I think this applies equally to all. We will all have to have a same standard whether it is somebody belonging to political opposition or somebody belonging to a political friend.”
“I think the fact that we have to to convey our opinion and differences in a more restrained manner is something which all of us have to realise,” he said.