NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday took a dig at the Opposition saying that calling for discipline these days was branded as autocratic. Praising Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu for his discipline at his book launch, Modi said, “Venkaiahji is a disciplinarian, but the country’s situation is such that it has become easy to call discipline undemocratic. If someone calls for discipline, then that person is branded autocrat.
The whole dictionary is opened. But the discipline Venkaiahji calls for, he himself follows it.” As Rajya Sabha Chairperson, the Opposition has on several occasions targeted Naidu for not allowing them to raise issues. Naidu’s book, Moving on... Moving Forward: A Year in Office, is presented as a report to the people on his mission and its outcomes during the year since he was sworn-in as Vice-President on August 11 last year. The book launch event was also attended by former prime ministers Dr Manmohan Singh and H D Deve Gowda, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, several ministers, MPs and senior officials. Dr Singh said that the Vice-President’s political and administrative experience was amply reflected in his one year in office. But the best is yet to come.
Lauding Naidu for his visionary leadership, Modi said: “He has the ability to endear himself to people across all sections. He is also a disciplinarian. Whichever duty he had, he performed with utmost diligence and adapted into that role with ease.” “Atalji wanted to give him a ministry. Venkaiahji said, ‘I want to be the minister for rural development. Venkaiahji is a farmer at heart. He is passionate about the welfare of farmers.” Speaking about Naidu’s punctuality, the PM said, “He does not wear a watch, but he reaches for programmes on time.
And if the programme does not get over in time, then he becomes uneasy. Discipline is in his nature.” Speaking after the book release, Naidu urged all political parties to evolve a code of conduct for MPs and MLAs, both within and outside the House, for effective functioning of legislatures to restore the confidence of the people in parliamentary institutions. “While there is cause for a great deal of celebration in the way Indian economy is shaping up and how India’s standing in the comity of nations has been steadily going up, I am a little unhappy that our Parliament is not functioning as it should,” said the Vice-President.
Naidu’s book on his ‘mission of engagement’
The 245-page book, Moving On… Moving Forward: A Year in Office, brings out Venkaiah Naidu’s mission of engagement” on four key issues with various stakeholders across the country and its alignment with the mission of a new India in the making.