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Mahatma Gandhi's birthday will be observed as International Non-Violence Day.

India will be ably represented by Mrs. Sonia Gandhi

Added by santanupal on September 8, 2007


Akshay Bakaya

It was not Sonia Gandhi who thought up the idea of an International Day of Non-Violence.

This campaign came from Paris children working on the film "Gandhi". Peace Nobel Shirin Ebadi took their "Call for Ahimsa Day - International Day of Non-Violence" (cf. google) to the World Social Forum in Bombay (Jan. 2004) - see Iain Ball in the Indian Express, 21st Jan 2004, and columns by veteran Gandhian Siddharaj Dhadda and Purushottam Agrawal in the daily "Jansatta". Also Times of India (Feb 1st, 2006). A front-page report in The Telegraph ("Ahimsa Finds Teen Voice", by Charu Kasturi, 30 Jan, 2006) mentions young Ju-Hee Jung's essay sparking off this campaign from Paris, and how excited Arjun Singh was about this, how Priya Dutt with Rahul Gandhi was to work out an "action plan" etc.

Among those who'd signed the online Call for Ahimsa Day, or given support in discreet ways were Romila Thapar, Krishna Kumar, K.R. Narayanan, Desh Raj Goyal, Ramchandra Gandhi, Asma Jahangir, Zia Mian, Karamat Ali, Beena Sarwar, Sheema Kermani, Noam Chomsky, Immanuel Wallerstein, David Hardiman, Ramchandra Guha, Praful Bidwai, Bharat Bhushan, Sukumar Muralidharan, Mushirul Hasan, Neeladri Bhattacharya, Teesta Setalvad, Rohini Hensman, Javed Anand, Anand Patwardhan, Amar Kanwar, etc. apart from the original drafters of the petition - Purushottam Agrawal (JNU), Rishi Nanda (Philosophy, St. Stephens), Dilip Simeon (Aman Trust), Harsh Kapoor (South Asia Citizens Web) etc.

No proposal about WHAT one could do on this day has come from Sonia and Co. (see "Non-Violence Manifesto"). Those protesting her UN presence, wishing to see a "true Gandhian" in her place, go to "downloads" at "Ahimsa Online" and listen to the Gandhi Memorial Lecture (2nd Oct. 2005) by Purushottam Agrawal. available in print too (GPF). The speaker asked for the Paris call to be heeded. Protesters (google 'Narain Kataria Hindu Swayamsevak') could ensure this speech is widely heard instead of Sonia's!


I think protesters would still need to hear India's official views as presented to the UN by Shrimati Sonia Gandhi, to know what they are protesting about!!