New Delhi: The idea of a `homogenous nation` would be problematic and the pluralist structure of India needs "constant nurturing", Vice-President M Hamid Ansari said Sunday.
"We live in a world of nation states but the idea of a homogenous nation state is clearly problematic. Diversity is identifiable even in the most homogeneous of societies today," Ansari said.
Speaking at the 75th session of the Indian History Congress on `History and Historians` organised by Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Ansari said, "The global scene in modern times has been replete with complexities and tensions of what has been called the national question."
Ansari said the sheer diversity of identities in India, which has 4,635 communities according to the Anthropological Survey of India, was a "terse reminder about the care that needs to be taken while putting together the profile of a national identity".
"Our sagacity in building pluralist structures that have stood the test for over six decades, stands in contrast to many straight-jacket edifices in other societies that came to grief. By the same token, these structures need constant nurturing," he added.
Ansari`s comments came as the recently concluded winter session of parliament was marred over the opposition`s allegations that leaders from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have been flaring up communal sentiments.
The Rajya Sabha, where Ansari is the presiding officer, was stalled for days over the issues of re-conversion and communal comments.