St Petersburg, Oct 15 (IANS) Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said on Sunday that mutual tolerance and respect among different religions and ethnic groups were absolutely essential for peace, harmony, and just social order in the world.
Speaking at the 137th Assembly of Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) here, Mahajan said the language of pluralism was that of dialogue and debate, give and get, speaking and listening.
“Diversity should not be a pretext for conflict, but should be seen as a treasure that enriches us all,” a statement quoted her as saying.
She said parliaments and parliamentarians had a “very responsible” role to play in fostering the culture of inter-faith and inter-ethnic dialogue.
Mahajan lauded India as the largest and most plural society in the world and said it was “based on spiritualism, humanism, and giving less importance to materialistic growth”.
She said Indians were socially, politically, culturally, religiously and spiritually democratic as a result of which a number of religions and religious ideas had taken birth and flourished in India.
Mahajan is leading an Indian parliamentary delegation to the IPU event being held from October 14 to 18.
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