Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for an inclusive society that does not make social distinctions is just what India needs. Addressing thousands of Bharatiya Janata Party workers after his historic win, Modi said from now on there will only be two segments of people: the poor and those who want to lift them out of poverty. He credited his victory to the farmer who feeds the nation and the honest middle-class taxpayer who expects an upright administration.

Some of this may be political rhetoric. Still, it would brighten Modi’s aura if he makes an extra effort to take every section of society along as he pushes for development. The nation has moved forward over the past five years. But some groups, Muslims in particular, have felt left out, even threatened. To put their fears at rest, Modi must condemn cow vigilantes and those who commit hate crimes. The concerns of minorities need to be addressed for the sake of his legacy as the leader of a diverse country. Everyone has equal rights and everyone must feel safe. The Prime Minister’s vision of an inclusive India is commendable. Let’s hope it is realized in spirit.

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