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Mahatma-gandhi-Peace-2012Dharamshala: - The Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) organised a special function to celebrate the 143rd birthday of Mahatma Gandhi and the International Day of Non-Violence on Tuesday, 2nd October, at the Kashag secretariat, Dharamshala.

Dr Lobsang Sangay, the political leader (Sikyong) of Tibetans, ministers of cabinet (Kashag) and CTA officials above the rank of joint secretary attended the ceremony.

Addressing the reporters after hoisting the Indian national flag, Dr Sangay said, the Tibetan administration is observing the International Day of Non-Violence coinciding with the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, as per a resolution passed in the UN general assembly in 2007.

"Mahatma Gandhi ji has made a tremendous contribution to India as well as the world. His commitment to peace and non-violence is well respected all over the world," he said.

The Tibetan political leader said, the current Tibetan struggle is based on the Gandhi's decades of non-violent principles, "we, Tibetans also contributed toward non-violence and democracy for last fifty years," he told reporters.

"As His Holiness the Dalai Lama always mentions, India is our guru (teacher) and we Tibetans, are their chela (disciplines) and as far as non-violence is concerned, Gandhi ji is one of our most important guru," he added.

On behalf of Tibetans, the Tibetan political leader also paid homage to Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri, former Prime minister of India, "today is also birthday of Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri, therefore, we, Tibetans also pay our respect to him as well."

Gandhi Jayanti is one of the auspicious day in India, it is celebrated in every state of India. This day marks the birth of an Indian patriotic man, Mahatma or the great Gandhi also known as the 'Father of the nation', who played a remarkable role in India's freedom struggle using the power of truth and non-violent principles. The great Gandhi has inspired movements for non-violence, civil rights and freedom across the world.

In 1921, Mahatma Gandhi led nationwide campaigns for easing poverty, expanding women's rights, building religious and ethnic amity, ending untouchability, increasing economic self-reliance, and above all for achieving Swaraj - the independence of India from British domination.

On 15 June 2007, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution, declaring Mahatma Gandhi Jayanti (birthday) as the International Day of Non-Violence. The Central Tibetan Administration has been celebrating the Mahatma Gandhi's birthday as an annual occasion for peace and non-violence ever since.