New President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday promised to uphold the values of justice, independence and equality shortly after he was sworn in as 14th President of India, pledging to protect and uphold the Constitution.
Addressing members of Parliament and various dignitaries, including Chief Ministers and diplomatic corps, Kovind said unity in diversity is the strength of India with various religions, culture and traditions forming the basis.
"We are different but we are one and united. These are the traditional values and there is no contradiction or alternative opinion about it," the new President said in a speech in Hindi delivered just after Chief Justice of India J. S. Khehar administered the oath of office to him in a brief but glittering ceremony in the Central Hall of Parliament.
"We need to sculpt a high growth economy, an educated, ethical and shared community and an egalitarian society as envisioned by Mahatma Gandhi and Deen Dayal Upadhyay," he said, adding there was need for integrating the values of the old with modern science.