NEW DELHI: Days before the vice presidential poll, M Venkaiah Naidu reached out to all Members of Parliament seeking their support, assuring them that on being elected he will defend and uphold the ideals of freedom struggle, the spirit and principles of the Constitution of India.
Giving an account of long years of public life, legislative experience, commitment to cooperative federalism, the vice presidential candidate also referred to role of Rajya Sabha in building a new India and an Opportunity Society.
In his letter to all MPs who constitute the electoral college for the Office of Vice-President of India, Naidu spoke of the hard work and passion with which he brought about changes as Union Minister in the architecture of new schemes and programmes, processes and systems of decision making and implementation to ensure involvement of States. “ I am a firm believer in the principle of cooperative federalism” stressed Naidu, keeping in view that on being elected, he would get to chair the proceedings of the ‘Council of States’.
Referring to the important role played over the years by Rajya Sabha and its members as a pillar of political democracy, Naidu noted that “the House of Elders may be required to play an even more important role in the years ahead as we seek to build a new and modern India.. As a rising nation, we have the onerous responsibility of overcoming poverty, illiteracy, social and gender discrimination, corruption and debasement of politics. In this challenging century, we must build an Opportunity Society for all Indians and, in the process, contribute to the betterment of the world.” The former union minister assured the MPs that it would be his solemn responsibility to strengthen the hands of President of India and referred to Ramnath Kovind’s assertion on assuming office that “pluralism and unity in diversity are the pillars on which India’s nationhood rests.”
Naidu also underlined the role of Rajya Sabha in enabling social and economic equality alongside the political equality achieved with the adoption of the Constitution. In doing so, he referred to the last address of Dr B R Ambedkar to the Constituent Assembly on November 25, 1949 underlining the need for such equality.
Naidu said that the Parliament and all the successive governments since Independence have played their part in the Nation taking major strides in different spheres but still there is lot to be done. He said “ We today face the challenges posed by terrorism, Climate Change, economic and cultural globalization and the opportunities and disruptions of technology. It shall be my endeavor to facilitate the proper conduct of Rajya Sabha so that all MPs can contribute their best to the making of a New India. I fully share the optimism of the 125 crore countrymen about their future and of the country.” In conclusion, Naidu said “I can assure you that I will uphold the dignity of office and protect the collective constitutional inheritance.”