THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has urged the young generation to maintain vigil against the erosion of democratic values. “Freedom of speech and freedom to express voice of dissent give strength to democracy. But what we see are moves to curb freedom of expression and intolerance towards dissenting voices. The young generation should resist such moves,” he said.
The Chief Minister was speaking after inaugurating the valedictory of the National Students’ Parliament organised by the Kerala Legislative Assembly here on Monday. The CM said that the country needed efforts to evoke a sense of nationality among the people by retaining the diversity of the land. Attempts to bring everyone into a uniform model of living would result in the murder of democracy and diversity. Youngsters should keep vigil against this.
“Besides electing people’s representatives, democracy should also involve efforts to end social and economic inequality. The people of the country withstood challenges like the Emergency because of their grit and democratic sense,” he said. Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan presided over the function. He said the future of the country was safe in the hands of the new generation.
“The students’ parliament was an effort to stimulate the student community. Kerala, which has a long tradition of social movements took the lead for this too,” he said. Shashi Tharoor MP asked the participants not to give a second chance for the BJP to rule the country to spread communal hatred and divide the people.
CPM politburo member Sitaram Yechury said the fundamental values of the Constitution are under siege now. “Democracy cannot exist without secularism and equality. Your future depends on how you would defend the present,” he said. Other speakers included Congress leader V M Sudheeran, Swami Agnivesh, Vadgam MLA Jignesh Mevani, Muhammed Muhsin MLA, Youth Welfare Board vicechairman P Biju and Legislative Assembly Secretary V K Babu Prakash.