Now, Chidambaram says 2015 most polarised year after Partition in 1947 | india | Hindustan Times
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Now, Chidambaram says 2015 most polarised year after Partition in 1947

2015 was perhaps the most polarised in India’s history after Partition in 1947, former finance minister P Chidambaram said on Friday.

india Updated: Feb 27, 2016 09:23 IST
Chidambaram

Former Finance Minister P Chidambram with J & K National Conference Working President Omar Abdullah releases his book "Standing Guard - A Year in Opposition" at a function in New Delhi(PTl)

2015 was perhaps the most polarised in India’s history after Partition in 1947, former finance minister P Chidambaram said on Friday.

Read more: Chidambaram questions Afzal Guru’s hanging, BJP blames it on UPA

“The year did not end with the narrative of the economy. Instead, it ended with the narrative of intolerance, of confrontation, with more and more people apprehensive and insecure,” he said at the launch of his latest book “Standing Guard -- A Year in Opposition”.

“The year 2015 was perhaps the most polarised year of India’s history after Partition in 1947,” he said.

Declaring he was proud to be in opposition, which, however, did not mean “being an enemy of the government”, Chidamabaram cited Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar to say “a king without a critic will fail. A king must embrace his critic, listen to him and must fear the day when he has no critic”.

Read more: Chidambaram’s statement earlier could’ve saved my husband: Afzal’s wife

Listing the three occasions when India was polarised as the Partition, the demolition of Babri Masjid in 1992 and 2015, the Congress leader wondered how the narrative had changed for the worse so quickly.

He said the debate around the Dadri killings should not be whether a man kept beef or mutton in his home but whether a mob has the right to lynch. Similarly, it was not whether Rohith Vemula was a Dalit or not, but how insensitive a university was in dealing with him, he added.

Stressing that sobriety and humour must be brought back in discourse, and compassion in politics, Chidambaram called for building a large social platform that can be shared by liberal, secular, progressive people, and groups, NGOs, and so on.