Vice-President M. Hamid Ansari said that a deficit of integrity and constitutional morality was harmful to the public good in material terms.
Delivering the convocation address at the University of Hyderabad here on Tuesday, the Vice-President said this was substantiated by the reports of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament and the India chapter of Transparency International. “Thanks to RTI, a good deal of information is otherwise also available in the public domain. Together they reveal a disturbing pattern of departures from norms of integrity.”
Pointing out that being a citizen and being a good citizen were far from being the same thing, he said the former was a legal fact, while the latter demanded participation in and contribution to the common good.
Categorising citizens into three types—those who were personally responsible, those who participate in social activities within the established structures and values and those who go beyond the first two categories and actively seek realisation of goals and values enshrined in the Preamble of the Constitution.
The Vice-President said there was, of course, a fourth “unmentionable” category of those who flout rules, evade responsibilities, and bring disgrace by their behaviour to the civic community to which they belong. “A mature society would ostracise them, a less mature one will endure the burden while seeking a corrective,” he observed.
He said the commitment of a society and polity to educating, grooming and nurturing its citizens, eventually “manifests” itself in the latter's approach to civic participation, standards of personal responsibility and adherence to constitutional morality.
Vice-Chancellor of the university, Seyed E Hasnain, said the UoH was entrusted with the task of benchmarking and identifying universities of excellence on the lines of Ivy League of the United States and supporting them in all respects to find a place in global rankings. As many as 942 students received degrees, including 158 M.Phils, 121 M.Techs. and 82 Ph.Ds.
Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan presented medals to meritorious students. Chancellor of the university R.Chidmbaram administered an oath to new graduates. Chairman, Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister, C. Rangarajan, eminent Urdu poet Kunwar Akhlaq Mohammed Khan Shahryar, well-known Kuchipudi exponents Raja Reddy and Radha Reddy were honoured with honorary doctorates.