Sunday, February 4, 2007

Reflecting Gandhi

Gandhi Peace Prize

It was most appropriate that the Gandhi Peace Prize 2005 was presented to Most Rev. Desmond Mpilo Tutu by the President of India for his invaluable contributions towards social and political transformation of South Africa and by contributing to World Peace. Rev Tutu had distinguished himself as a champion for human causes for several years and his contribution is spectacular. In 1978, Archbishop Tutu became the first Black General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches. This position provided a national platform to Archbishop Tutu for denouncing the apartheid system as "evil and unchristian." Tutu called for equal rights for all South Africans and a system of common education. He demanded the repeal of the oppressive passport laws, and an end to forced relocation. Archbishop Tutu encouraged nonviolent resistance to the apartheid regime, and advocated an economic boycott of the country. Later when he chaired a commission Archbishop Desmond Tutu counseled forgiveness and co-operation instead of revenge for past injustice. Here lies the greatness of this Titan. The life and work of Archbishop Desmond Tutu will remain an inspiration not only for the people of Africa but also people of other nations who are fighting for their genuine rights. By honouring Rev Tutu, we are honouring ourselves.

Dr. A. R. K. Pillai, President, IDF

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