Values of peace, justice stressed for world nations

DUBAI — Hundreds of students of various nationalities, members of the diplomatic corps in Dubai, and business leaders gathered at the Indian High School in Dubai yesterday to pay tribute to the apostle of peace, Mahatma Gandhi, on his 138th birth anniversary, which was also observed as the first UN International Day of Non-Violence across the world.

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Wed 3 Oct 2007, 9:06 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 4:42 AM

After listening to the speeches, many a student felt inspired by the peace movement launched by Gandhi, which ultimately freed India from British colonial rule.

Finding it difficult to hold back their feelings, some of the students said that though Gandhi tread on this planet decades ago, his ideologies and teachings were not anachronistic in the current era.

On the contrary, they are completely relevant at a time when the world is plagued by violence, they felt. Aayush Rajasekaran, a Grade IX student from Indian High School, Dubai, is convinced that non-violence is the easiest way to resolve issues.

“We are confronted by violence on television, in schools, in buses and all around us. But I believe that truth and ahimsa (non-violence) can resolve several problems. I am particularly inspired by Gandhi’s words: ‘There is no way to peace. Peace is the way’,” he pointed out.

Hari Krishnan, Grade IX student of Our Own Indian School, Dubai, said the event made him realise that if students strived together and set an example in small ways, they could make the world a better place.

“Here on, I will try my best to be as honest as possible. I believe that we can follow the path Gandhi laid out for us,” he said.

South African national Natascha Pogulis, Grade XI student of Dubai International Academy (DIA), noted that Mahatma Gandhi’s fight for Indians in South Africa had deeply impacted her.

She said, “Mahatma Gandhi was and still remains one of the world’s most influential people and he will always be remembered for his passion for humanity.”

The thoughts expressed by the students prompted the Consul-General of India in Dubai, Venu Rajamony, to say that he could see “future apostles of non-violence in each and everyone student... each student is a Mahatma Gandhi, a Nelson Mandela and a Martin Luther King.”

India’s Minister of State for External Affairs E. Ahamed observed that many people, including peace-loving people, were often mistaken in their thinking that Gandhiji’s ideology of peace was merely an illusion, with no chance of ever becoming a reality.

“This is because the world continues to be scarred and wounded by violence and terrorism in many forms,” he said.

“As we struggle to achieve the objective of the establishment of peace amidst incidents of mindless violence, we need to ask ourselves which is the path we should take — the path of a peaceful struggle for justice, or the path of brutal violence that targets innocents?” he asked.

Among those present on the occasion were South African Consul-General Agnes Nyamande-Pitso, Chinese Consul-General Gao Youzhen, Japanese Consul-General Hiroyasu Kobayashi, British Consul-General John Hawkins, Deputy Chairman of Dubai Natural Gas Company Mirza Hussain Al Sayegh, Arab Media Group CEO Abdul Latif Al Sayegh and Managing Director of Indus Tech Consulting Dr. Shihab M Ghanem.

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