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UK NRI donated letters and handwritten manuscripts of Mahatma Gandhi
at the 138th birth anniversary

London, Oct. 01, 2007
Piara Singh

NRI Tom Tar Singh, OBE, entrepreneur has donated a set of letters and handwritten manuscripts, dating from the 1920s to 1940s of Mahatma Gandhi to Indian government at the 138th birth anniversary of the Mahatma Gandhi.

Tom Tar Singh said:

  • His grandfathe Pakhar Singh and other NRI generation had inspired the ideals and values of Mahatma Gandhi.
  • His grandfather lived his life following Gandhi's principles of non-violence, truth and justice
  • Mahatma Gandhi's principles have been an inspiration to him and he believe there is scope to apply them more widely in modern India.
  • His grandfathe Pakhar Singh's memory has donated the manuscripts

The officially unveiled ceremony will be held in India in coming months.

As the world celebrated Mahatma Gandhi's birth anniversary as the first Non-Violence Day on Tuesday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described his message of 'Ahimsa' as an empowering weapon which had relevance in the present troubled times.

Recalling the struggle of the Father of the Nation for the country's independence, he said Gandhi was not a lofty saint but a political leader who practised what he preached.

The Prime Minister flagged off the 'Ahimsa Divas Yatra', a march from the Congress in Delhi to Rajghat, and released a commemorative stamp to mark the occasion.

Earlier, he led the nation in paying homage to Gandhi at his 'Samadhi' Rajghat.

"Many a time I feel that we have forgotten the importance of 'Ahimsa'. But it is a weapon that can make anybody powerful and strong," he said flagging off the 'Ahimsa Divas Yatra' to mark the 138th birth anniversary of the Mahatma.

"People may wonder of what use is non-violence in today's times. But it is relevant even today as a way of life and in governing the country," he said, observing that using 'Ahimsa', Gandhi had turned the independence movement into a fight of the common man.

Singh, expressed happiness over the United Nations deciding to celebrate Gandhi's birth anniversary as the International Day of Non-Violence.

Releasing the commemorative stamp, he expressed the hope that the global community will rediscover the relevance of the eternal message of Gandhi for fighting conflict, violence and terrorism.

Mahatma Gandhi's message of love and peace, of non- violence and Satyagraha, of the equality of all people, of harmony between all religions, is a universal message. It is a message for all times, for all societies, for all peoples," Singh said.

The Prime Minister said as long as there was temptation in the human mind to resort to violence, "the Mahatma's message of non-violence will tug at our hearts".

Observing that Gandhi's philosophy has stood the test of time, he said it would continue to do so till humankind sought peace and equality of all.

"Wherever and whenever injustice is redressed and freedom won through peaceful means, Gandhiji will be remembered," he said.

Singh said Gandhi had abiding regard for the dignity of labour and showed the meek the power they could conjure up from within them.

"Let us not forget that Gandhiji was not some lofty saint. He was a political leader. He was regarded as a Mahatma because he practised what he preached, because he cared for the poorest of the poor, the weakest of the weak," he said.

Singh said Gandhiji's idea of communal harmony and non-violence continues to have great relevance "even in our present troubled age".

"As long as there is strife and injustice, as long as there is inequality and indignity in the human condition, as long as there is pain and suffering, as long as there is violence and hatred, the ideas and ideals of Mahatma Gandhi will resonate and find followers," he added.



Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described his message of 'Ahimsa' as an empowering weapon which had relevance in the present troubled times.