NEW DELHI -- Yet again striking a conciliatory note and asking parties to rise above partisan politics, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said any incident of "atrocity" is a "blot" on the society and the nation and asserted that unity and harmony is the only way to go forward.
Amidst criticism and counter-criticism of those who raised questions over tolerance and some people making controversial remarks asking dissenting people to 'go to Pakistan', he said questions cannot be raised over patriotism of any of the 125 crore Indians.
"Nobody needs to produce a certificate of patriotism," Modi said winding up a debate in the Rajya Sabha on the Constitution, which he described as a "social document" that can guide the nation in all situations.
Modi underlined the 'mantra of ekta', saying there can be "many excuses for disintegration" in a diverse country like India but ways should be explored to keep the country united.
Like in Lok Sabha last week, Modi struck a conciliatory approach towards the opposition at a time when some crucial bills are stuck in the House.
He pitched for a bipartisan approach to all issues and decried attempts to introduce partisanship or politics on any issue concerning the nation.
In his 40-minute reply to the debate during which the government came under attack over 'intolerance', Modi said, "if there is any incident of atrocity against anybody, it is a blot on all of us, for the society as well as the nation. We should feel the pain and take this to ensure such things do not happen."
Though he did not specify any such incident, the statement may be seen a reference to the Dadri case where a Muslim man was lynched over beef-eating rumours.
Underlining that the country cannot move forward by 'tu tu, mai mai' (bickerings), Modi advocated the need for consensus while decrying the tendency to link everything to politics.
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