United Nations, Sep 25 : Several world leaders including Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Korean President Moon Jae-in and UN Secretary General Antonio Gutteres paid rich tributes to Mahatma Gandhi.
Speaking at a special programme on the relevance of Gandhiji, Korean President Moon Jae-in said in order to ensure peace in the Korean peninsula, Gandhi would remain "a great teacher, who inspire us with wisdom and courage".
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said Mahatma Gandhi was a big fan of hopes - "a saviour in despair" and a "light in darkness".
Gandhi's brilliant and mesmerizing leadership showed the world that an individual could bring earth shaking social and political change in a non violent way," she said. Gandhiji believed in 'people's power', she said and maintained that in her father Sheikh Mujibar Rahman's struggle also there was so much relevance of Mahatma Gandhi. Ironically, she said both Mujibar Rahman and Mahatma Gandhi were assassinated.
"Gandhi 's love for common people and ideals of non-violence contributed to shaping Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib's vision of struggle, non-cooperation, and peaceful movement against oppression and tyranny by the then Pakistani rulers against the peace-loving Bengalis," she said.
UN Secretary General described Gandhi as 'one of the giants of the 20th century'. "I thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Indian Mission for organising this meeting at UN headquarters," he said. "Gandhiji's vision and philosophy are the pillars of the work of the United Nations," the UN chief said. Gandhiji's vision was 'far beyond politics', he said.
India hosted the special programme here at the UN headquarters on the theme ‘Relevance of Mahatma Gandhi in the Contemporary World’.
Korean President Moon Jae-in said one of the principal teachings from Gandhi's life was that 'there is no path to peace, the Peace is the path' by itself.
Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien loong also spoke and so did Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Gandhi Solar Park located at UN headquarters roof built by Indian funding of 1 million dollars. The gesture symbolises India's commitment to fighting Climate Change.
A Gandhi Peace Garden at the State University of New York Campus at Old Westbury where 150 trees have been planted in honour of Mahatma Gandhi's 150th birth anniversary, was also inaugurated. There was also release of a UN postage stamp on Gandhiji. In fact, Mr Modi also thanked the UN for issuing commemorative stamp on the occasion. (UN)I