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Mahatma Gandhi Day Celebration in Hawaii on October 2, 2018
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard spoke at the 13th Annual Mahatma Gandhi Day
International Day of Nonviolence by Gandhi International Institute for Peace (GIIP)

Los Angeles, Oct. 12, 2018 Dr. Raj Kumar/Ramesh/ A.Gary Singh


From left to right: Madana Sundari, Veda Das, Dr. Raj Kumar, U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, Hon. Senator Mike Gabbard and Hon. Representative, Matthew LoPresti and interfaith leaders.

Gandhi International Institute for Peace (GIIP) celebrated its 13th annual event to commemorate the 149th birthday of Mahatma Gandhi on Monday, October 2, 2018 in Waikiki, Honolulu.  The event included a Hawaiian blessing, an Indian spiritual invocation, and speeches from political leaders including Hon. U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, Hon. Senator Mike Gabbard, Hon. Senator Josh Green, Hon. Representative, Matthew LoPresti, Audrey Hidano- Deputy Director from State of Hawaii, Mr. Edward Hawkins- Executive Director From City and County of Honolulu, and Gurudas Pilarnekar- Director of Art and culture Goa India. Proclamations from State of Hawaii, and City and County of Honolulu along with the certificates from the Senate and the House of Hawaii were handed to Dr. Raj Kumar, Founder and President of Gandhi International Institute for Peace in Hawaii. The UN Ambassador, Anwarul K. Chowdhury sent a special message issued by UN secretary General on this occasion.

Professor Mark Jason Gilbert from Hawaii Pacific University also spoke eloquently about Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy and his teachings about nonviolence and sustainability of our environment.  The interfaith leaders, Professor Ramdas Lamb from Hinduism, Rev. Eric Matsumoto from Buddhism, Mollie Sperry from Bahai and Dr. Jared Yurow from Judaism chanted prayers for world peace.

There were Bollywood and Hula dance performances. The Royal Hawaiian Band played national anthems of India, U.S. and Hawaii Pono ‘I’ . They also played peace song, ‘let there be peace in the world’ at the beginning of the event.   Hundreds of local residents and tourists attended the event.  The event was free to the public.  Free vegetarian snacks and bottles of water were offered by the Down to Earth and Vegetarian Society of Hawaii.

Dr. Raj Kumar laid the foundation of the Gandhi International Institute for Peace on September 11, 2001.  This Peace Institute is raising awareness about nonviolence in Hawaii.  One of the major goals of the Peace Institute is to promote ‘World Peace’.
Dr. Kumar says, “Peace does not mean absence of noise, violence /and war but it is an internal experience.  People cultivate peace by planting the seeds of nonviolence among their children and family. They become the agents of peace and spread the message of peace in their society hence transforming the world into a better place to live.”

In December 2014, Dr. Kumar introduced a bill through Honorable Senators Suzanne Chun-Oakland and Brian Taniguchi in the Hawaii Legislature. The Senate and the House passed the bill SB 332 unanimously. Hawaii’s Honorable Governor, David Y. Ige, signed SB 332 into law as Act 005 on April 9, 2015.  Hawaii was the first state in the United States to proclaim October 2 as “Mahatma Gandhi Day”.

Bronze statue of Mahatma Gandhi is located under a banyan tree near the Honolulu Zoo in Waikiki.  Gandhi’s statue is a symbol of peace, nonviolence, equality, justice, and freedom. It reminds us that peace is possible even in the midst of turmoil.  Gandhi united all religions and said that religious paths are different but ‘Truth is one.’  He emphasized that world is one family and love is an invisible thread, which binds us together.

Mahatma Gandhi practiced and preached nonviolence (Ahimsa) to its followers.   He led a nonviolent movement known as “Satyagraha” (insistence on truth) through vast civil disobedience. He became one of the most important political and spiritual leaders of his time. He succeeded in removing the British Empire from India in August1947 without using armed force of any kind.  Due to his sacrifices for humanity, he is known as the ‘Father of the Nation’ in India and one of the best political and spiritual leaders in the world.

In October 2016, GIIP published the book Gandhi’s Wisdom for You.  GIIP will release another book, Anger and Nonviolence, in October 2019.

Mahatma Gandhi said, “ The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”For more information about Gandhi International Institute for Peace, visit