New Delhi, Nov 20 (PTI) Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Monday alleged that some "informed minds" were exploiting the ignorance of people for petty political gains and said this cannot be allowed.
He also expressed anguish over disruption of proceedings and disturbances in Parliament being "weaponised" and stressed a narrative is required to neutralise "such tendencies".
Addressing an event of the Santhigiri Ashram here, he also targeted those trying to tarnish the image of the country on "untenable grounds" and said some people leave the shores of the country to "demean us".
Former Union ministers Shashi Tharoor and K V Thomas were also present.
"Nothing can be more inappropriate and condemnable that some informed minds monetise ignorance of the people for political equity. That cannot be allowed," he said.
The vice president was of the view that an "informed mind" has to be spiritual and nationalist, and a non-exploiter.
Referring to the passage of the women's reservation bill in Parliament during a special session, he said those "informed minds" knew that the law cannot come into force in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, "yet they made an issue of it... intelligent minds must give befitting replies". Soon after the bill was notified into a law, Dhankhar had used the "informed minds" phrase to attack Congress leader P Chidambaram without taking his name.
The law seeks to provide 33 per cent reservation to women in Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies. It will come into force after the next census and a delimitation exercise (redrawing of Lok Sabha and assembly seats).
Dhankhar, who is also the Rajya Sabha chairperson, expressed anguish at "disruptions and disturbances" in the House being "weaponised" and said a narrative was required to "neutralise such tendencies". The country cannot allow narratives that demean and tarnish the image of the country on untenable grounds, he said.
"People leave the shores of the country only to demean us," he said.
In his address, Tharoor recalled the Kerala-headquartered ashram's role during the Covid pandemic. PTI NAB NAB ANB ANB