Reject vigilantism, but be vigilant: President Mukherjee

SansadTV Bureau
File photo: President Pranab Mukherjee.

File photo: President Pranab Mukherjee.

Raising the issue of lynchings in the country in the name of vigilantism, President Pranab Mukherjee today said when mob frenzy becomes so “irrational and uncontrollable”, the people have to be “vigilant” to save the basic tenets of the society.

He also urged the intellectual class to rise and be vigilant as it could act as the biggest deterrent to forces of darkness and backwardness.

“When mob frenzy becomes so high, irrational and uncontrollable, we have to pause and reflect. Are you vigilant enough,” he said at a function to celebrate 70 years of India’s independence.

“I am not talking of vigilantism. I am talking about whether we are vigilant enough proactively to save the basic tenets of our time,” he said.

Former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and party vice president Rahul Gandhi, besides a host of dignitaries, former ministers, MPs and Congress leaders were present at the event that saw the launch of a commemorative publication by National Herald.

Mukherjee also said that one cannot obliterate one’s duty towards the issue, saying, “Posterity will demand an explanation from us about what we have done. I raise this question within myself.”

The president also appealed to the media to remain constantly vigilant saying it is because of it that democracy survives.

“You must rise to preserve and ensure human dignity is maintained, slavery is kept away. You will have to maintain your vigilance,” Mukherjee said.

“I do believe that citizen’s vigilance, intellectual vigilance and media vigilance can act as the biggest deterrent to the forces of darkness and backwardness,” he said.