New Delhi, Oct 2 IBNS | 2 years ago

India remembered the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi on his 144th birth anniversary on Wednesday.

Day-long programmes were organised across the country as people from different walks of the society paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his birthday.

Floral tributes were paid at Raj Ghat, the memorial of Mahatma Gandhi, by top politicians of the nation.

President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress supremo Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday visited Raj Ghat here to pay their tribute to Mahatma Gandhi on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti.

However, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi was absent at the occasion.

Gujarat Chief Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi tweeted: "In Porbandar. Tributes to the two great sons of our Nation, Mahatma Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri ji on their birth anniversary. Today let us pledge to buy Khadi, save environment and light the lamp of prosperity in homes of the poor."

"Cleanliness always remained very close to Gandhi ji's heart. Let us give immense importance to cleanliness and keep surroundings free of dirt," he said.

President Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday wished the country on the eve of Mahatma Gandhi's birth anniversary and urged people to imbibe wisdom from the valued teachings of the 'Father of our Nation'.

"Gandhi Jayanti is an occasion for us to reflect on the life and contribution of the Father of our Nation. This is a day to re-dedicate ourselves to ideals of the Mahatma who forged the instrument of Satyagraha based on truth, non-violence and power of self-suffering and helped India shed the yoke of colonialism," Mukherjee said in his message.

"Mahatma Gandhiji had an exemplary passion for justice and an indefatigable spirit of service to mankind. The Mahatma's ideas and way of life permeated the collective conscience of India and found expression in all the democratic institutions that we have built up over the years.

"When we drew up our Constitution, concepts such as Fundamental Rights, Directive Principles, Abolition of Untouchability, Rights for underprivileged and marginalized were all inspired by Gandhian thoughts and values," he said.

Mukherjee urged people to ensure that Gandhi remained alive in their hearts and minds forever.

"On this auspicious occasion, I urge all citizens to imbibe wisdom from the valued teachings of Mahatma Gandhi and ensure that Bapu remains alive in our hearts and minds forever," he said.

(Posted on 02-10-2013)