Former PM Manmohan Singh accentuated on the "disturbing trends" of growing intolerance, communal polarisation and incidence of violent crimes propelled by hatred of a certain sect will harm our polity, on the occasion of Rajiv Gandhi's birth anniversary meet.
He said, "Country has been witnessing some disturbing trends over the past few years. These trends of growing intolerance, communal polarization, growing incidents of violent crimes propelled by hatred of certain groups & mob violence can only damage our polity."
Singh further added that these trends are repugnant to the promotion of peace, national integration, and communal harmony, which are cherished objectives enshrined in our Constitution.
"All of us need to reflect on how we can contribute to arresting these trends," he said.
Remembering former PM Rajiv Gandhi, Manmohan Singh recalled his words and said, "Nothing is more important than the unity and integrity of our nation. India is indivisible. Secularism is the bedrock of our nationhood. It implies more than tolerance. It involves an active effort for harmony."
"No religion preaches hatred and intolerance. Vested interests, both external and internal, are inciting and exploiting communal passions and violence to divide India," Dr. Manmohan Singh added.
Congress party bigwigs, including wife and party president Sonia Gandhi, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, Uttar Pradesh East General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, husband Robert Vadra, former President Pranab Mukherjee and others paid tribute on the 75th birth anniversary of Rajiv Gandhi at the prayer meeting organised at 'Veer Bhumi', the memorial of Rajiv Gandhi. An audio clip from one of Rajiv Gandhi speeches and the devotional song 'Vaishnava Jan To' were playing in the background.
On August 19, Manmohan Singh was elected unopposed to the Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan. Singh was a member of the Rajya Sabha from Assam for almost three decades. He was the member of the Upper House for five consecutive terms from 1991 to 2019. He was also the Prime Minister of the country for two consecutive terms in 2004 and then in 2008, until 2014 after which PM Modi took over the office.
Singh's tenure in the Rajya Sabha ended on June 14 this year and he could not be renominated as the Congress party did not have the strength to send him to the Upper House from Assam again and there was no other vacancy left. Rajasthan has 10 Rajya Sabha seats. Remaining nine seats of Rajya Sabha from the state are with the BJP.
(With PTI inputs)