Trinidad pays tribute to Gandhi on World Environment Day
By PARAS RAMOUTAR
Port-of-Spain: The works and thoughts of Mahatma Gandhi were highlighted as Trinidad and Tobago observes World Environment Day June 5, 2019 with the commencement of the planting of 1000 trees over a period of several months.
And delivering the feature address was former President of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Mr. Justice Anthony Carmona who hailed the works of Mahatma Gandhi on the environment. The programme was organized by the Carbon Zero Initiative of Trinidad and Tobago(CZITT) and the Borough of Chaguanas by Mayor GopaulBoodan. It was part of the 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Gandhi organized by the Indian High Commission.
“Mahatma Gandhi never used the words environment protection, environmental degradation or Climate Change. However, his words and actions made him an Environmentalist. It was simply an issue of terminology and nomenclature. Although during his time environmental problems were recognized as such, with his keen foresight and insight, he predicted that things were moving progressively worse,” Carmona said.
Carmona referred to Gandhi’s book, “Hind Swaraj”, on which he cautioned mankind against unrestricted industrialism and materialism, and warned India against even in 1909 that industrialization and machines have an adverse on the health of people, and although he was not opposed to machines and automation, yet he opposed the large scale of machinery.
Carmon pointed out that Gandhi criticized people for polluting the rivers and other water bodies and mills and factories for polluting the air with smoke and noise, as he implored people to simply lives but no everyman’s greed. “Gandhi was a repository of peace, kindness and compassion, not only to people but also to his physical environment.
“As we celebrate the invaluable contribution of Gandhi and Gandhian philosophy and vision and its role in shaping the world, I wish to acknowledge and commend RanaMohip, musician par excellence who was lauded by Indian Prime Minister NarendraModi for his rendition of Gandhi’s favourite song, ‘Vaishnav Jan To’, Modi tweeted: RanaMohip from Trinidad and Tobago gives his voice to Bapu’sfavourite song. Gandhi Ji’s message of kindness, compassion and truth reverberates through Trinidad and Tobago, which has a proud history of unity in diversity like India”, Carmona said.
The fifth president of Trinidad and Tobago said that it was a well woven narrative that the teachings of Gandhi inspired Nelson Mandela who is turn inspired many others. In this twin-island republic, it brings to mind the potency and transformation that can take place when the Nile and the Ganges meet for when they met through persona and conjoint philosophies of Gandhi and Mandela, it created a roadmap and real solutions for a better world.
“We can draw inspiration from the efforts of the Chinese and Indian Governments on this World Environment Day 2019. China is hosting the global World Environment Day celebrations with the City of Hangzou hosting the main event, and India has launched in Agra, the home of the TajMahal, India’s Comprehensive Act.
Mr Raj Kamal, acting India High Commissioner, spoke of the High Commission involvement in the project as well as highlighting the works and thoughts of Gandhi.
Source: World Hindu News (WHN)
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