PM Narendra Modi

Hemanta Kumar Nath is a correspondent and photojournalist based in Assam, India, who reports on local news in Assam, the north east Indian state.

Guwahati, November 1 : Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Sunday asserted Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for ‘unity, peace and harmony’ coinciding with the birth anniversary of former Home Minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel observed as ‘National Unity Day’ is not loud and clear in the backdrop of growing incidents of intolerance and hatred.

National Unity Day Message Lacked Clarity

Gogoi said the Prime Minister’s “unity, peace and harmony” would have befitted the nation if he could have stirred the people by sending out a strong message to those who seek to divide the nation, that the country’s unity and integrity would not be allowed to be put at risk and that such forces would be dealt with a stern hand.

PM Narendra Modi.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Real respect and lasting tribute can be paid to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel only by sending out a message that intolerance would not be tolerated and that the country’s unity and integrity now at stake, would not be allowed to be compromised with come what may,” Gogoi said.

Divisive forces recently reared their ugly heads, threatening to create divisions throughout Indian society. Gogoi says the Prime Minister could have risen to the challenge, to support and bring together the forces of unity, thereby strengthening the social fabric.

People Want Positive Action

“PM Modi seems to be in a subdued mood and his tone and tenor does not seem to match with the prevailing volatile situation. Even when the asphyxiating atmosphere arising out of rising intolerance prompted scores of writers, artistes and scientists to register their strong spontaneous protests, the present dispensation at the Centre labelled it as ‘not real and managed one’, much to the chagrin of the people,” Gogoi said.

Gogoi wants Mr. Modi to bind together the forces of unity and integrity and to contain the divisive forces with an iron hand.

“If PM Modi wants to pay real tributes to iron man Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and great leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi, who sacrificed their lives for the country’s unity and integrity, he has to rise to the occasion by dealing firmly with the divisive forces and not through mere rhetoric. The time for PM Modi is to act now,” Gogoi said.