"His teachings and ideals, shared with Martin Luther King Jr. on his 1959 pilgrimage to India, transformed American society through our civil rights movement," Obama said on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Americans owe enormous gratitude to Gandhi, he said.
The US President Barrack Obama had voiced similar sentiments last month in response to a question about with whom he would like to have dinner whether dead or alive, during his discussion with 9th graders at Wakefield High school in Airlington Virginia where he gave a National speech welcoming students back to school. Obama said that he would like to have his dinner with Mahatma Gandhi who was his real hero.
Obama said that on behalf of the American people he wants to express appreciation for the life and lessons of Mahatma Gandhi on the anniversary of his birth. He also voiced the need for people to learn from Gandhi's non-violence in this age of violence and terrorism.
Obama was en route to Denmark to pitch for Chicago's candidature as host for 2016 Olympics.
Copy of Obama's message:
Statement by President Obama on the occasion of Mahatma Gandhi's birth anniversaryOn behalf of the American people, I want to express appreciation for the life and lessons of Mahatma Gandhi on the anniversary of his birth. This is an important moment to reflect on his message of non-violence, which continues to inspire people and political movements across the globe.We join the people of India in celebrating this great soul who lived a life dedicated to the cause of advancing justice, showing tolerance to all, and creating change through non-violent resistance.Americans owe an enormous measure of gratitude to the Mahatma. His teachings and ideals, shared with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on his 1959 pilgrimage to India, transformed American society through our civil rights movement. The America of today has its roots in the India of Mahatma Gandhi and the nonviolent social action movement for Indian independence which he led.Tomorrow, as we remember the Mahatma on his birthday, we must renew our commitment to live his ideals and to celebrate the dignity of all human beings.
Marking the International Day of Non-Violence, President of the UN General Assembly Ali Abdussalam Treki, released a Mahatma Gandhi stamp on the occasion of his 140th birth anniversary. The United Nations Postal Administration released the $1 stamp designed by Miami-based artist Ferdie Pacheco. The stamp shows the Gandhi painted in red, blue and gold. Susan Rice, the US Permanent Representative to the UN was also present during the ceremony and spoke about Gandhi's role.
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Mumbai, Maharashtra, India