Friday, 22 June 2007

UN declares Gandhi’s Birthday as Day of Non-Violence

Report taken from

The UN will observe Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday as the International Day of Non-Violence every year, it said in a statement yesterday.The UN called upon all member nations and individuals to commemorate October 2 in “an appropriate manner and to disseminate the message of non-violence.”

The resolution was introduced by India.

“I am extremely happy that the United Nations will henceforth observe Gandhi Jayanti, October 2 as International Day of Non-Violence each year, following a unanimous decision by the General Assembly of the United Nations yesterday,” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said.

“This is a tribute by the world community to the Father of our Nation,” the prime minister said.
“The universal relevance of Gandhiji’s message of non-violence is more important today than ever before since nations across the world continue to grapple with the threat of conflict, violence and terrorism,” he said.

The comments section gives interesting historical background to how this day came about.
By Akshay Bakaya
The idea of Ahimsa Day, International Day of Non-Violence is originally an initiative of an English class of mainly Japanese and Korean children in Paris, working on Attenborough's film 'Gandhi'. This proposal was supported by Romila Thapar, Asma Jahangir, Noam Chomsky, K.R. Narayan, Krishna Kumar, Immanuel Wallerstein, etc. and taken to the 2004 Bombay WSF by peace Nobel, Shirin Ebadi. Krishna Kumar (now director NCERT) had predicted that this call will take 3 years to be heard...Hard News, the Indian associate of the international French monthly Le Monde Diplomatique, played a role too. Sanjay Kapoor discussed it with Mohsina Kidwai who took it to Sonia Gandhi just before the Satyagraha convention where archbishob Desmond Tutu formally proposed that a Call for an ahimsa day be sent to the UN.


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