He asked if minority problems ought to be viewed just in “arithmetic terms” or as a “state-of-mind” issue.
“Despite an enhanced awareness both for the problems of the minorities and efforts to address them…the communal fabric is under pressure,” Ansari said.
Well-known Constitution expert Fali S Nariman was among those who spoke at the event with the theme of “Responsible Minority and Sensitive Majority in Secular India”.
Nariman argued that, despite well-defined rights under the Constitution, minorities “need the protection of courts”.
Protection of minorities was not merely about “compassion”, but it had a deeply rooted “jurisprudential basis,” he added.
Pointing to instances of Muslim youth charged with terror being freed by courts, minority affairs minister K Rahman Khan said the intelligence and bureaucracy should stop stereotyping the community.
NCM chief Wajahat Habibullah said the conference would deliberate on the issues raised.