He was speaking on the issues of cow vigilante attacks, mob lynchings and people not shouting "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" being told to leave the country. Modi further said Ansari did his best to uphold the Constitution.
Ansari then quoted Radhakrishnan who had said: "A democracy is distinguished by the protection it gives to minorities".
Asked in an interview why he thought Indian values were "suddenly" breaking down, Vice-President Hamid Ansari answered: "Because we are a plural society that for centuries, not for 70 years, has lived in a certain ambience of acceptance".
BJP Rajya Sabha MP Paresh Rawal today fired a sardonic salvo at outgoing Vice-President Hamid Ansari over his remarks about Muslims of the country.
Ansari, also said that there is a breakdown of Indian values and the ability of authorities at different levels in different places to be able to enforce what should be normal law enforcing work.
He alleged that Ansari made the statement to set his "political agenda".
While leader of the House and finance minister Arun Jaitley said it was a nostalgic occasion for both Ansari as well as members, adding that the Upper House changed drastically from what it was in 1950s and 1960s.
Earlier, BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya had criticised the vice president for his comment that there was a sense of insecurity among Muslims and said such a "petty" remark was not expected from someone in his position.
He said Mr. Ansari came from a family that had been in public life for over 100 years, with a long association with the Congress and an active participation in the Khilafat movement.
Modi said that Ansari was leaving behind "great memories" and his "contributions have been important". Ansari's speech assumes significance as he chaired the House that has been the battleground between NDA and the opposition parties.
He said that when his term started ten years ago, an eminent leader had advised him to keep his calm during the chaos in the Rajya Sabha and the suggestion served to be useful. He also lauded Ansari's initiative of starting the Rajya Sabha TV channel. "But what passes between the Vice-President and the PM in the nature of things must remain in the domain of privileged information".