"Everyone is free to say as they wish" in India, Indian envoy Ruchira Kamboj said at UN.
India does not need to be told what to do on democracy, the country's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, who assumed Presidency of the UN Security Council for the month of December, said here on Thursday.
India on Thursday assumed Presidency of the 15-nation UN Security Council for the month of December, during which it will host signature events on countering terrorism and reformed multilateralism. The Presidency will bring the curtains down on India's two-year tenure as elected non-permanent member of the powerful UN organ.
Ms Kamboj, India's first woman Permanent Representative to the UN, will sit in the President's seat at the horse-shoe table. On the first day of India's presidency, she addressed reporters in the UN headquarters on the monthly programme of work.
Responding to a question on democracy and freedom of press in India, she said "to that I would like to say that, we don't need to be told what to do on democracy.
"India is perhaps the most ancient civilization in the world as all of you know. In India, democracy had roots going back to 2500 years, we were always a democracy. Coming down to very recent times, we have all the pillars of democracy that are intact - legislature, executive, judiciary and the fourth estate, the press. And a very vibrant social media. So the country is the world's largest democracy.
"Every five years we conduct the world's largest democratic exercise. Everyone is free to say as they wish and please and that is how our country functions. It's rapidly reforming, transforming and changing. And the trajectory has been very impressive. And I don't have to say this, you don't have to listen to me. Others are saying this," Ms Kamboj said.
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