Vrindavan, 2015.11.19 (PTI): Living with diversity and finding unity in diversity is practised in India over centuries and it is part of our civilisational values, President Pranab Mukherjee said in Vrindavan today against the backdrop of debate on ‘intolerance’ in the country.
“Living with diversity, finding unity in diversity is practised in India over centuries. That is why many people wonder how is it possible in India, in one system of administration, in one Constitution, in one way of legal jurisprudence and functioning.
“Is it possible to accommodate, to absorb so much diversity. Many a time we are confronted with these questions,” he asked and answered himself that “the answer lies in our civilisational values.”
The president was speaking during a function to celebrate 500th year of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu’s advent in Vrindavan.
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was a revered monk and a reformer in the medieval India.
Mr Mukherjee said that (civilisational values) is the reason why we live with 128 crores of people, the second largest population of the world, with almost all major religions.
Seven major religions are practised in India, more than 100 languages are spoken and over 1,600 dialects are used in India, he said.
“All three major ethnic groups Dravidians, Caucasians and Mongolites. They live in one piece of land. In whole of north eastern India you will find the concentration of Mongolite people. Whole south India, you will find Dravidian people and in North and North West, people belonging to Caucasians group.
All these major ethnic groups live in one state.
“It had been possible because of our cultural values, civilisational values, which has taught us over centuries and which has descended to us, and we have nurtured it which is a part of life and therefore it is no cliche to us,” the president said.
Ever since the Dadri lynching and subsequent events, Mr Mukherjee has been appealing for tolerance and pluralism.
Citing teachings of various spiritual leaders and poets, he asked people to accept the message of great saints and “recharge our society, retransform ourselves with love and harmony”.
He said India’s civilisation is 5,000 years old. “It has been contributed by many saints various sages but all converge into one vast ocean of humanity,” Mr Mukherjee said.
Later, the president visited Sri Radha Raman Temple to pay obeisance.