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Press Release: Gandhi Jayanti and conclusion of Gandhi@150

PRESS RELEASE

Gandhi Jayanti and conclusion of Gandhi@150

The Consulate General of India, New York in collaboration with various organizations commemorated the 151st Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.These celebrations marked the conclusion of the two-year long celebration of Gandhi@150.

Consulate General of India, New York along with members of BharatiyaVidyaBhavan and International Ahimsa Foundation marked Gandhiji’s birth anniversary and International Day of Non-violence by paying respects to Mahatma Gandhi at Union Square in New York on 2 October 2020. On this occasion, Congressman Gregory Meeks from New York conveyed his  greetings.“Just as Martin Luther King Jr. chose to be a disciple of Gandhi’s philosophy of non-violent protest, so too must we his disciples. We must never succumb to violence and hatred, and instead use the power of our values to bend the moral arc of history towards justice” he noted. Congressman Tom Suozzi (NY), Congressman Frank Pallone (NJ), Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (PA), Congresswoman Chrissy Houlahan (PA) and Congressman Brad Wenstrup (OH) and Congressman Steve Chabot (OH) sent their wishes and thoughts on Gandhiji’s life through video messages.

Consul General unveileda bust of Mahatma Gandhi inthe town of Amherst near Buffalo, New York on October 02, 2020. Buffalo has a significant presence of Indian American community. Indian students are also present in significant numbers in the educational institutions in Western New York. Council of Heritage and Arts of India, Inc. (CHAI), a community organization collaborated with the Consulate General of India, New York and Indian Council of Cultural Relations in installingthis bust.Speaking on the occasion, Consul General Mr. RandhirJaiswalemphasized how teachings of the Mahatma are relevant for the youth today and how Gandhian values can help nurture a harmonious society and a green planet. Eerie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, New York Assemblywoman Karen McMahon and Amherst Town Supervisor Brian Kulpa were present on the occasion.

Continuing with the Gandhi@150 celebrations, Gandhian Society, New Jersey and Gandhi Research Foundation, a Gandhian organization based in India, organized an exhibition highlighting the life, teachings and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi. Impact of Gandhi’s teachings on worldleaders and relevance of his teachings in the world today were also displayed in the exhibition. The exhibition was organized from September 30 - October 2, 2020 at Royal Albert’s Palace in Fords, New Jersey. Consul General appreciated the initiative of the local Gandhian organizations in connecting the youth with the life and message of Mahatma Gandhi. John McCormacMayor of Woodbridge Townshipand prominent members of Indian community attended the inauguration of the exhibition.

Last year as part of Gandhi@150, Consulate General of India in New York in partnership with Long Island, NY based Gandhian organization Shanti Fund and The State University of New York (SUNY) and members of the communityhad planted 150 trees launching the Gandhi Peace Garden in the Old Westbury campus of SUNY. A Gandhi Jayant  event was held at Gandhi Peace Garden on October 01, 2020. The event was attended by Consul General; Mr. Chad Lupinacci, Huntington Town Supervisor; Andrew Raia, Town Clerk (former Assemblyman); Consulate officials and representatives of Shanti Fund. Upon completion of this event, Consul General Mr. RandhirJaiswal also paid his respects at the life-size statue of Mahatma Gandhi, located in front of H Lee Dennison Building, in Hauppauge, New York.

Apart from this, other Gandhian organizations and individuals also organized online competitions to commemorate Gandhi@150 Grand Finale.In partnership with the Consulate, Gandhi Memorial Society, Columbus, Ohio conducted a virtual speech contest on ‘Mahatma Gandhi – His Life and what I have learned from it’. The contest was held for three age groups from ages 6 – 25 years. This contest saw good participation from the youth.

This Consulate also conducted an online quiz competition, a video competition wherein participant had to send a 1-minute video on themes based on Gandhiji’s life. A painting competition was also held. Approximately 250 youth participated in the competitions. Winners were awarded with gifts and books written by Mahatma Gandhi. From the Consulate’s collection of Mahatma Gandhi books, many books were donated to various organizations.  A virtual Gandhi Katha was also organized with Dr.ShobhanaRadhakrishna of Gandhian Forum for Ethical Corporate Governance.

New York

October 03, 2020