Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary to be a global event – Celebrations in Greece and Cyprus
The Government of India has decided to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi with a range of cultural events that will last for two years starting from 2nd October 2018.
The two-year-long celebrations will be held across India and all over the globe spreading Mahatma Gandhi’s principles, which helped lead India to independence and inspired movements for independence, civil rights, secularity, self-sufficiency and non-violence across the world.
The idea behind the national series of events is to spread the concept of communal harmony to the masses and especially to the younger generation, which often cannot connect with the ideology of Gandhi. The first part of the celebrations will start with cycling competitions, pedal walks and painting contests. It will be followed by academic events like series of lectures and symposiums on topics related to the philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi. The next focus of the celebrations will be on a series of cultural events including theatrical plays and short film competitions on Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy and life.
On the international level, the government of India plans to conduct youth exchange programmes, film shows, essay competitions and cultural events organised by the Indian missions abroad.
Inaugurating the framework of the government’s plans, the President of India Shree Ram Nath Kovind launched the logo and a web portal for the commemoration of the 150th birth anniversary of the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, on September 18, 2018 at a special function in New Delhi.
The logo branding will be on display on the government websites, postal stamps, at train stations, and public sector undertakings, while the new web portal (http://gandhi.gov.in/) will provide information about the cultural events and on the Gandhian literature and philosophy, as well as audios, videos, and rare photos from Gandhi’s life.
Celebrations in Greece and Cyprus
“Personalities like Gandhi-ji and Archbishop Makarios don’t belong to one country, but they are part of the heritage of humanity.” Ram Nath Kovind, Nikosia, 3 September 2018
Currently, the focus is on the celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday (Gandhi Jayanti) on October 2, which has also been declared as the International Day of Non-Violence by the United Nations Assembly.
In Greece, the celebration of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary was organised by the Embassy of India, on Tuesday 2nd October, 2018 at 19.00 hrs at the Conference Center of the Agricultural University of Athens, (Iera Odos 75, Athens). The program included: i) Speeches by Ambassador Ms. Shamma Jain, by the Director of the E1 Directorate for Educational and Cultural Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Michael Efstratios Daratzikis, and by the Rector of the Agricultural University, Prof. Spyridon Kinzios; ii) Presentation of commemorative Indian stamps with Mahatma Gandhi; iii) Three video presentations, one with Gandhi’s sayings, one with the Gujarati rendition of Mahatma Gandhi ji’s favourite bhajan “Vaishnav Jan Toh” sung by Kostas Kalaitzis, and one abound the economic development of modern India; iv) Indian classical dance Bharat Natyam with Leda Santala and her students. Indian refreshments were offered at the end. See the outstanding performance of the song ‘Vaishnav Jan To’ by Greek singer Konstantinos Kalaitzis on YouTube.
In Cyprus, the celebrations of Gandhi Jayanti and International Day of Non-Violence was organised by the High Commission of India in Nicosia on Tuesday 2nd October, 2018 at 9.30 AM at the monument to Mahatma Gandhi, next to the House of Representatives, Nicosia Municipal Gardens, Nehru Street. Floral tributes were paid to Mahatma Gandhi by the High Commissioner Dr. R.K Raghavan. The program concluded with the playing of Gandhiji’s favourite Bhajans (devotional songs). Refreshment were served after floral tribute. Later in the evening a LED projection of film “Relevance of Bapu’s message in the Contemporary world” (4 minutes) was screened at 7:00 PM onwards repeatedly till early morning at the House of Representatives. See the outstanding performance of the song ‘Vaishnav Jan To’ by Cypriot singer Vakia Stavrou on YouTube.
(Up): The logo for 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.| Photo Credit: President of India@rashtrapatibhvn
(Down): Indian President Ram Nath Kovind, left, and Cypriot President of the Parliament Dimitris Sillouris, centre, pay tribute to the monument to Mahatma Gandhi in Nicosia. | Photo Credit: AFP
Read more about Gandhi Jayanti HERE