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HindustanTimes Fri,01 Aug 2014

Nuclear energy only option before country: Ansari

PTI  Dehradun, October 20, 2012
First Published: 20:31 IST(20/10/2012) | Last Updated: 20:32 IST(20/10/2012)

Due to limited energy reserves and ever growing pressure on them, nuclear energy is the only option left before the country, Vice President M Hamid Ansari said on Saturday.

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"Given the country's energy requirements in the years to come and our limited resources, nuclear energy is of high priority," Hamid said.

He was interacting with the students of the Doon School in Dehradun, on the occasion of the famed institution's 77th founder's day.

The vice president, who preferred questions from students rather than making a speech to mark the occasion, said a vibrant democracy meant not just a stable government but also a strong opposition.

Asked whether as Rajya Sabha chairman he would prefer a strong opposition or a stable government, he said there was no contradiction between the two when seen in a broader perspective and they were integral parts of a vibrant democracy.

Replying to another question regarding Sachin Tendulkar being nominated to Rajya Sabha, the vice president said his genius as a cricketer and great wealth of experience as a sportsman will be beneficial in many ways to the government in promotion of sports.

"Considering the size and population of the country, it seems we are not where we deserve to be internationally in the sporting arena. That is perhaps because as a nation we have neglected sports and with people like Tendulkar in Parliament, it can be easier to give more attention to the lacuna and achieve that goal," the vice president said.

When asked whether as Rajya Sabha chairman he had to witness passage of a bill despite his personal reservations, the vice president said, "I am the only one who does not have a vote in the House. So the question of my agreeing or disagreeing to a legislation does not arise. I am just like a referee in a hockey match."

He said right to education was a basic human right which every one must be able to avail.

"Right to education is no less important than the right to live or the right to freedom of speech or expression. We were late as a nation in recognising this fundamental right but better late than never," he said.

He said the Doon School was a unique institution in the country and its students should feel privileged to be a part of it.

"But as every privilege should bring with it a sense of responsibility, students of this esteemed school should come forward and contribute their bit to the building of a nation," he said.

Uttarakhand governor Aziz Quraishi, who also spoke on the occasion, described the Doon School as a jewel in the crown of India's education system.

Chief minister Vijay Bahuguna said that the unique thing about the institution was that it not only produced bright and meritorious students but also good human beings.


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