Stressing that a values-based education helped promote ethics in society, President Ram Nath Kovind on Wednesday said there was need to promote a culture of discussion rather than dispute to address issues of caste, gender and other forms of discrimination.The President was in the city to inaugurate the Sadhu Vaswani International School, which is coming up in the Pradhikaran area. Remarking that Pune has long been a centre of education, Mr. Kovind said, “The story of modern India owes much to the educational, reformist and progressive ideas that have flowed from this city and for which our nation is truly appreciative.”Instrument for changeReferring to the work of reformers like Mahatma Jyotiba Phule, Savitribai Phule, Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Gopal Krishna Gokhale, the President said, “Each of these great men and women placed an emphasis on a culture of discussion rather than of dispute, and of addressing disagreements while being mindful of the other person’s dignity.”He noted that the chief architect of the Constitution, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, too, had a long relationship with Pune. “[Dr. Ambedkar], too, had stressed on the importance of education as an instrument for social change and for building a just and egalitarian society,” the President said.He said children should imbibe values of “culture, character, compassion and courage” that are perhaps not formally tested in a board examination. “But a child who internalises these [values] will always be sensitive to the world outside, to the underprivileged … these values will help in coping with change in a world evolving more rapidly than perhaps ever before,” he said.The function took place at the Sadhu Vaswani Mission in the presence of spiritual leader Dada J.P. Vaswani. “Sadhu Vaswani’s disciple Dada J.P. Vaswani has dedicated every moment to the cause of humanity. He has been an ambassador of Indian tradition and culture on countless platforms … including at the United Nations,” said the President. Also present on the occasion were BJP leader Lal Krishna Advani, Union Minister Prakash Javdekar and Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao.