Respect for human rights includes acceptance of diversity and not merely tolerance of it, Ansari said. "It is necessary to make sure that a social consensus around equality, justice and empowerment exists, more so because there is reason today for concern about this consensus and about emergence of a propensity for intolerance of diversity and dissent," he added.

Ansari was delivering a speech on 'Social Innovation and Social Harmony' at the Pune International Centre. "This transition from tolerance to acceptance, in actual day-to-day practice, rather than as a mantra in political discourse, is critical for making society fully inclusive rather than selectively so," the Vice President said.

Underlining the need for being receptive towards various identities in a plural society lest it should remain only a majoritarian democracy that under-privileges minorities, Ansari cited, "It is for this reason that the Indian Constitution has provisions for the protection of minority rights.”

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