Intellectuals should keep country’s image in mind: Venkaiah Naidu to writers

HYDERABAD: Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said tolerance is genetically ingrained in Indian’s blood and the intellectual class should avoid generalizing “stray incidents” which may damage the country’s image.

Taking a jibe at some writers and media, Naidu, who is the Urban development minister, also opined that intellectuals may condemn some of the unfortunate incidents but they should keep the country’s image in mind while doing so.

“Some people try to generalize some of the stray incidents (of violence) occurred in the country. They try to magnify it. They try to proclaim that the tolerance levels have come down in the country. It will bring disgrace to the country. We may condemn the act but not the country per se,” he said.

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“We see a new trend in the country nowadays. They say tolerance in this country is coming down. India is the only country in this world where tolerance is observed, if not 100 per cent at least 99 per cent,” Naidu said after releasing the book ‘Nayaka Trayam’ penned by former Rajya Sabha member Y Lakshmi Prasad.

“If you go back to history, India was invaded by lots of foreign countries but there was not a single instance where India invaded any country. Indians do not have that kind of attitude also. We respect all religions. That is the greatness of India. Tolerance is genetically ingrained in Indians’ blood,” he added.

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The minister also advised some writers to be constructive while criticizing the government and alleged that some people have undertaken malicious campaign versus Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Referring to the arrests made during Emergency in 1970s and killings of Sikhs after former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s assassination, Naidu said except a few writers and intellectuals like Khushwant Singh most of them remained silent (during that time).

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“(MM) Kalburgi incident is condemnable. (Narendra) Dabholkar is incident is condemnable. We should not politicize the issues. Writers should not combine these issues with politics,” he said.

Without taking any names, Naidu said some newspapers have become “views papers” with biased writings.

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