New Delhi, Sep 2: Underlining the importance of the non-disrupted functioning of Parliament, Vice- President M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said he is a little unhappy that Parliament is not functioning the way it should.
Addressing an august gathering here to release the book ‘Moving On… Moving Forward: A Year in Office”, based on Mr Naidu’s completion of one year in office, the Vice-President said there should not be any discrimination in the country based on religion, caste, gender.
"Bharatmata ki jay is not just putting a garland but wishing well for all Indians. Discrimination based on religion, caste, gender etc should not be acceptable to the nation," the Vice-President said.
Mr Naidu also pointed out at the sensationalism in the media and added that they should focus on constructive debates rather than obstructive behaviour in Parliament.
"Sensationalism is senselessness. Media should give importance to constructive debates, not focus just on obstructive behaviour in Parliament," he added.
Talking about the idea behind the book, Mr Naidu said, 'it is to present a report to the people because he believes there should be transparency and accountability in public life.'
Stressing on the need to give importance and sustained support to agriculture sector, Mr Naidu said otherwise farmers will abandon farming as it is not remunerative.
'There is need for sustained support to agriculture. The Finance Minister is here, he may not like what I am saying as he has to take care of everybody, but there has to be biased towards agriculture in coming days otherwise people are leaving agriculture as it's not remunerative,' he said.
At the function, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the book, which contains Mr Naidu’s experiences during first year as the Vice-President and Chairman of Rajya Sabha.
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, former Prime Ministers H D Deve Gowda, Dr Manmohan Singh, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, leaders from various political parties also attended the function.
The Prime Minister said, 'it is commendable that Mr Naidu presented a report card of sorts about his first year in office, containing the rich work he has done both inside and outside Parliament.'
Lauding the Vice-President, Mr Modi said “whichever duty he had, he performed with utmost diligence and adapted into that role with ease” and added that “Venkaiah ji always provides visionary leadership whenever he gets a responsibility. He gets the best experts to ensure justice is done to the work assigned”.
The Prime Minister added that Mr Naidu is a farmer at heart. “He is passionate about the welfare of farmers and agriculture. The Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana has came into effect because of his efforts,' he said.
He also said, "I was party general secretary then... Atalji (Atal Bihari Vajpayee) wanted to give a major portfolio to Venkaiahji but he went to the then Prime Minister and requested him to allot him the responsibility of Rural Development".
Speaking at the event, Dr Manmohan Singh said Mr Naidu brings to office of Vice President political and administrative experience and that is amply reflected in his one year in office.
“But best is yet to come. As a poet has said, "Sitaron ke aage jahan aur bhi hain, abhi ishq ke imtehaan aur bhi hain," Dr Singh said.
Addressing the gathering, Mr Deve Gowda said, “I don’t want to comment on how things are going on right now, but Mr Naidu has done his best to protect the dignity of the office of the Chairperson of the Rajya sabha”.
The 245-page book with seven chapters describes Mr Naidu's 'mission of engagement' on key issues with various stakeholders across the country and his vision in creating a new India. (UNI)