Safeguarding democracy as important as defending borders: Badal - Chandigarh News
Updated Jun 25, 2020
He said the country's internal and external health are equally important and interdependent.
In a statement to coincide with the 45th anniversary of the internal Emergency imposed in the country by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on June 25, 1975, Badal said the commitment to democracy could become meaningless without an equally profound commitment to the secular ethos as enshrined in the constitution.
"Secularism is a prerequisite to democracy, and vice-versa. Each ideal strengthens the other."
Badal, widely regarded as one of the key architects of popular resistance to the internal Emergency, said the federal structure in the country is vital for the health of democracy.
"Democracy is not a single-tier structure. It functions at the individual and social levels through the universal voting right, but at the national and inter-state levels, a genuinely federal structure is the only guarantee for meaningful working of our system for national prosperity and for turning India into a global superpower."
Emphasizing the need for "constant vigil" against overt and covert dictatorial tendencies that can always threaten democracy, he said: "Like our independence and sovereignty, secularism and democracy too have to be defended every moment of every single day in the life of our nation. Even a moment's let-up can prove disastrous and even fatal."
The five-time Chief Minister also cautioned the people, especially the youth, against taking democracy and secularism for granted.