Statue of Indian freedom fighter Mahatma Gandhi to join Churchill, Mandela in famed London square

Published: July 8, 2014
BAPU Father of the Nation-India

Indian leader Mohandas K. Gandhi, also known as Mahatma Gandhi, smiles in this 1947 file photo, location unknown. AP PHOTO

KATY DAIGLE
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

NEW DELHI — A statue of India’s pacifist freedom fighter Mohandas K. Gandhi will be placed in London’s Parliament Square alongside other famous statesmen, including his political adversary Winston Churchill, the British government said Tuesday.

Gandhi helped lead India’s campaign of civil disobedience to British colonial rule until India and Pakistan gained independence in 1947. But the white-robed pacifist was assassinated a few months later by a radical Hindu nationalist who objected to his secular vision for India.

“Gandhi remains a towering inspiration and a source of strength,” British Foreign Secretary William Hague said in announcing the planned statue during a visit to New Delhi on Tuesday, according to a statement from Britain’s Foreign Office.

While many in India and across the world still see Gandhi as the country’s greatest hero, Churchill was no great fan. Instead, Churchill — who was Britain’s prime minister from 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951-55 — was reportedly disturbed by Gandhi’s “striding half naked” into the British viceroy’s palace in 1931 “to parlay on equal terms with the representative of the Emperor-King” while simultaneously conducting a resistance campaign.

He also famously derided the devout Hindu as a middling lawyer who was “posing as a fakir,” or holy man.

The Gandhi statue would also join others of famous British and foreign statesmen, including Abraham Lincoln and Nelson Mandela. The clipped green lawn of Parliament Square is also a site for demonstrations and protests next to the country’s Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey.

Britain hopes the new statue will be up by the summer of 2015, in time for the 100th anniversary of Gandhi’s return to India from South Africa, where he worked as a lawyer after earning his law degree in London.

“Gandhi’s view of communal peace and resistance to division, his desire to drive India forward, and his commitment to nonviolence left a legacy that is as relevant today as it was during his life,” Hague said while visiting the white Gandhi memorial building in New Delhi on Tuesday.

Hague was also meeting Tuesday with new Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other officials, after visiting the financial capital of Mumbai on Monday.

06:50ET 08-07-14

[+]

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Readers Comments (0)

Comments are closed.

Featured

Seniors-documentary-Parents

Stricken by her mom’s death, Sikh filmmaker learns ‘to keep moving forward’

LARISSA CHAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Vancouver filmmaker Baljit Sangra’s mother suddenly died after being struck by a car, Sangra was so devastated that she wanted…
Continue Reading »

Royal Wedding

Aga Khan’s eldest son Prince Rahim and his wife Kendra Salwa Spears expecting their first child

VANCOUVER DESI The Aga Khan’s eldest son Prince Rahim and his wife Princess Salwa (Kendra Salwa Spears) are expecting their first child, the spiritual leader…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Surrey mayoral candidates share city visions at first meeting

AMY REID VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Surrey mayoral candidates met for the city’s first all-candidates meeting Thursday night at SFU. Six of the seven candidates…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Seniors-documentary-Parents

Stricken by her mom’s death, Sikh filmmaker learns ‘to keep moving forward’

LARISSA CHAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Vancouver filmmaker Baljit Sangra’s mother suddenly died after being struck by a car, Sangra was so devastated that she wanted…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Surrey mayoral candidates share city visions at first meeting

AMY REID VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Surrey mayoral candidates met for the city’s first all-candidates meeting Thursday night at SFU. Six of the seven candidates…
Continue Reading »

OTTAWA

Surrey MP Nina Grewal’s account of the shootout in Ottawa

NINA GREWAL SPECIAL TO IANS  When Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was speaking at about 9.30 a.m. Wednesday in a caucus room of parliament, we…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

student dead

Two dead, including gunman, in school shooting north of Seattle

DOUG ESSER THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MARYSVILLE, Wash. — A student opened fire in a high school cafeteria north of Seattle on Friday, killing at least…
Continue Reading »

attack on Parliament Hill

Ottawa shooter kicked out of Burnaby mosque two years ago

Zehaf-Bibeau was asked to leave the mosque, because he had “gotten a hold of keys and stuff from the mosque, and when he got out…
Continue Reading »

labour laws violation

U.S. company penalized for mistreatment of Indian employees working 122 hours in a week

MICHAEL LIEDTKE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SAN FRANCISCO – A Silicon Valley company is paying more than $43,000 in back wages and penalties after labour regulators…
Continue Reading »

DESI-SOCCER

Surrey soccer captain played the U-18 national club championship using only one foot

KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW SOUTH SURREY – Kyle Sohi’s perseverance and performance in the 2014 Sport Chek National Club Championships U-18 Cup Final might go…
Continue Reading »

SURREY-FIELD HOCKEY

Barinder Rasode announces plan to develop field hockey pitch in Surrey

Third field at Tamanawis Park would cost approximately $3 million KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW NEWTON – Barinder Rasode and the One Surrey team were at…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Stan Lee-Bollywood

Stan Lee plans Bollywood film on his first Indian superhero

VANCOUVER DESI Stan Lee, the legendary ‘Spiderman’ creator, is reportedly planning his Bollywood entry with a film on his Indian superhero character ‘Chakra: the Invincible’….
Continue Reading »

KANGANA RANAUT

Even my parents think I am weird, says Bollywood ‘Queen’ Kangana Ranaut

HINDUSTAN TIMES Kangana Ranaut has always made unconventional choices, be it her movies or the way she dresses. And the actor says she’s happy the…
Continue Reading »

Happy New Year-Bollywood

Happy New Year: Mandatory ‘formula’ and all those old Bollywood references

HINDUSTAN TIMES Film: Happy New Year Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Sonu Sood, Vivaan Shah, Jackie Shroff Director: Farah Khan…
Continue Reading »