PM Modi praises Ansari, says never saw him getting into controversy

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

New Delhi [India], Aug. 10 (ANI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday appreciated outgoing Vice-President Mohammad Hamid Ansari and said that he never saw him getting into controversy. "I don't remember any controversy surrounding Hamid Ansari. It is a very big thing in itself," Prime Minister Modi said at the farewell ceremony of Ansari. Modi also said that after assuming this post for 10 long years, he hopes that Ansari will put forward his suggestions to improve the House and bring more credibility to it. An overwhelmed Hamid Ansari also said he was touched by the affections that were expressed this evening. He also applauded the House for acting like it is supposed to, unlike other countries where 'political opposition turns into physical opposition'. "There are many countries where political opposition turns into physical opposition, we are unique that we treat it as a game of hockey, where sides play by the rules and produce excellent rules. This is what I learnt over a period of 10 long years that in reality, a house of 245 members was of fellow citizens, not of warring factions. This is unique. In this process, I have made friends in all sections of the house. Nobody at least, on my face, accused me of leaning on one side or the other. So, I go back highly satisfied," Ansari said. In his last address as the Vice-President, Ansari earlier today said that democracy would turn into tyranny, if opposition groups are not given the right to free criticism, adding that a democracy is distinguished by the protection it gives to minority. "A democracy is distinguished by the protection it gives to minority. Democracy is likely to degenerate into a tyranny if it does not allow the opposition groups to criticise freely and frankly the policies of the government. But at the same time, the minorities have also their responsibilities," he said, quoting former president Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan during his farewell speech at the Rajya Sabha. Further during his speech, Ansari compared the position of the chairman with an umpire or a referee and said, "The chair is like an umpire in Cricket or referee in Hockey, witnessing the play without becoming a player." "The Rajya Sabha is not a stumbling block. I hope I succeeded in being fair," he said. Former Union Minister and veteran BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu will assume the office of the Vice President of India on Friday. Alongside, he will also be the Chairman of Rajya Sabha. (ANI)