The nation on Tuesday paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 149th birth anniversary with President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi offering floral tributes to the Father of the Nation at Rajghat here.
Marking the launch of the 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Gandhi, Kovind tweeted: “Homage to Bapu on Gandhi Jayanti. Let us rededicate ourselves to the values espoused by Mahatma Gandhi – peace, fraternity, harmony and inclusive national development. Gandhiji’s message remains relevant for all and he continues to be our guiding light.”
Modi visited Rajghat to offer his tributes to Gandhi and said: “The noble thoughts of Mahatma Gandhi have given strength to millions across the world. He was a stalwart who lived for others and to make our world a better place.”
Modi also tweeted on the “insightful op-ed” by Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on “how India and Singapore are united in the pursuit of building a cleaner and better tomorrow for the coming generations”.
Modi, sharing his op-ed to national dailies on the occasion, said: “From today we are entering Pujya Bapu’s 150th anniversary year. It is a great opportunity for all of us to fulfill their dreams.”
“He (the Mahatma) remains a shining beacon of hope for millions of people across the world who seek a life of equality, dignity, inclusion and empowerment. The impact he left on human society has few parallels…
“Let us think about how our actions can contribute to a cleaner and greener environment for the future generations. Almost eight decades ago, when the threats of pollution were not as much, Gandhiji took to cycling…”
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who also paid his floral tributes to Gandhi at Rajghat, remembered his contribution in peace.
“At Mahatma Gandhi’s memorial, I am reminded once again that he proved that non-violence can change history. As we mark the 150th anniversary of his birth, may his wisdom and determination guide our collective work towards peace and prosperity on a healthy planet,” he said in a tweet.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi also paid floral tributes to Gandhi at Rajghat.
Rahul Gandhi said truth and non-violence — the two beacons of Mahatma Gandhi’s life — that he lived and died for, are India’s foundation and true patriots must protect them.
“Gandhiji is not an immobile statue, he is a living set of ideas and values flowing through India. Truth and non-violence, which he lived for and was killed for are the foundation of our country. True patriots must protect them,” Rahul Gandhi tweeted.