Gandhis Martyrdom Day – 30 Jan 2019

Dr. G.G. Parikh, GANDHI-150
C/o. Bombay Sarvodaya Mandal,
299 Tardeo Road,
Nana Chowk, Mumbai 400 007.
Tel. 2387 2061

People’s Initiative to Commemorate Mahatma Gandhi’s Martyrdom Day!! 30th January 2019

A National Appeal!!
We appeal to every Indian to:-
Commemorate, pay homage and stand in silence for 2 minutes on the 30th of January at
11.00am and/or 5.17pm.
Organise Sarva Dharma Prarthana, Inter-Faith Prayer meetings.
Take a Pledge for Communal Harmony, Peace and Non-Violence

It was on this ominous day, 71 years ago, that Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated by a religious fanatic. The Apostle of Peace and Non-Violence was shot dead as he headed for an Inter-Faith Prayer meeting. A nation stood shocked! A man of prayer and peace, a man who strove for unity, harmony and coexistence among all religions, our diverse cultures, the man who united the nation and led our freedom struggle against the British – lay dead….killed by a religious bigot, motivated by an ideology of hate.

The man whose entire life had been a tireless message for peaceful co-existence and non-violence had met with a violent end. The nation mourned as one.

After 71 years of our independence, the nation is witness to the growing forces of religious hatred, bigotry and violence. The attacks on Minorities, Women, Dalits, Tribals, Journalists, Human Rights Activists have continued to increase. The economic exploitation of the workers and farmers has increased, leading to lakhs committing suicide, widespread unemployment and pauperisation.

It was during the course of our Freedom Struggle, that the ‘Idea of India’ further evolved and we bequeathed a modern Constitution unto ourselves. Today this very Idea, our very Constitution is under threat from the forces of majoritarian religious extremism and fascism.

It is to defend these very ideals, the ideals of an India, united in its diversity, committed to a modern Secular Democracy, Social Justice & Gender Equality, an Egalitarian society, that a number of secular organisations have come together and issued a National Call to Commemorate Martyrs Day, 30th January 2019, as a day for committing to and defending the values of Non-Violence and Communal Harmony.

We thus call upon the People of India, upon all secular Political Parties, Social Organisations and Institutions to come forth and commemorate the Martyrdom of Mahatma Gandhi and the moral values that he stood and died for.

Thus let’s stand in silence in our schools and colleges, in our homes and offices, in our fields and factories, in our places of worship, the pheriwalas and in our shops, even as we travel or then as we walk on the streets. Let the entire Nation stand in silence as One!

Thus let’s once again reaffirm our commitment to the Father of Our Nation and his message. Let the Nation rise as One, rise together in our silence!

Our Values

Anyone is welcome to come share/discuss what they believe ought to be our values. Here are some written by me, Imran on March 1 2018.

Truth Alone Triumphs (Our Values)

1. We join together to serve this land, not our self interests
2. We will not denounce other people rather seek to inspire them with our love and dedication
3. ‎We will spend frugally and be completely open and honest in all transactions
4. ‎We believe that inclusion should be based on aspiration, leadership and passion for a cause
5. ‎We believe in total freedoms, swift grievance redressal and corrective not punitive measures
6. We shall strive to consider our natural ecosystem in all that we do and seek to reduce our impact on nature
7. ‎We shall treat everyone with courtesy
8. ‎We shall not impose too harshly our sentiments on the killing for food while still encouraging people to experiment with a meat free diet
9. ‎We shall take our responsibility to our citizens and sister countries seriously
10. ‎We will strive for peace and ahimsa in all that we do and insist on everyone being kind and amicable to each other
11. ‎We will celebrate our differences and go out of our way to be hospitable to any sort of guest
12. ‎We will be sincere, honest and soulful in all our interactions
13. ‎We will filter out all we encounter on a screen of good and only encourage the wholesome.
14. ‎We will do our utmost to educate and uplift the masses
15. ‎We shall never tire from doing our duty to ourselves, our families, our communities, our geographies, our neighbours and even the world at large
16. ‎We shall preserve our culture and values bringing new expressions of the arts and showing more of our humanity with each passing day
17. ‎We will not squander our talents or resources on frivolous or petty desires
18. ‎We shall seek to coexist peacefully with everyone and not let them influence us negatively
19. ‎We will spend our time wisely preparing for a better and brighter future for all
20. ‎We shall rise to the need of the hour and spread love, positivity and hope wherever we go
21. ‎We shall comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable, but in a good way
22. ‎We shall allow people their freedoms in coming closer to their Maker whether they seek to look for the divine within or without, in the mundane or in the profound
23. ‎We will roll up our sleeves everyday, not resting until we have done our best for the realization of our goals
24. ‎We stand together in all that we do, one pale blue dot…

Dear Citizens


Dear citizens,

The government of India has declared November 26 as the Constitution Day.

Perhaps very few people know its significance. Most people would say that the Constituent Assembly had adopted the Constitution of India on this day in 1949. This came to be enforced on January 26, 1950 which we commemorate as the Republic Day.

But we would like to emphasise that November 26, 1949 is the most significant day in the history of this country. Our people were subjects in their respective kingdoms under the kings prior to Independence. After the British left, our kings formally joined the Indian Union.

Few moments before the constitution was adopted in the Constituent Assembly , the people of India were declared as supreme and sovereign owners of this country on November 26, 1949.

This is the reason why the preamble started with “WE THE PEOPLE OF INDIA” and the last line read “IN OUR CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY, this 26th day of November, 1949 do HEREBY ADOPT, ENACT AND GIVE TO OURSELVES THIS CONSTITUTION”

But hardly any effort has been made in this country to tell the people that they being owners of this country have a responsibility to protect, preserve and promote it in their own benefit.

Therefore, we few volunteers of Build India Group, a registered civil society in Delhi, undertook a responsibility of reaching out to educational institutions to spread citizenry consciousness with Article 51 A of the Constitution of India as its foundation among students and youth since 2008.

It took the colour of a celebration called Pledge Festival which many educational institutions organised along with us on the third Saturday of January every year. We thought of a day and not a date as we wanted that it must not coincide with any individual’s birthday or martyrdom day. We believe that the country is bigger than any individual.

Keeping in view the bad weather conditions, we thought of November 26 as a befitting day for this purpose and since 2012, started demanding with the government to declare this day as the Citizen’s Day or National Pledge Day.

The pledge has been drafted and circulated by us since 2010 in 15 languages keeping in view the spirit of Article 51 A of the Constitution. We drafted it in all languages in the simplest possible format as illiterate people can understand the contents of it.

With this pledge, we have done several experiments. Earlier we had a write-recite-commit protocol. Students were writing the pledge, reciting them in unison in a charged ambiance in the schools and putting their signatures on their solemn documents.

This country has over 30 crore students right from primary school level to the 12th standard. Imagine if students write the pledge and obtain the signatures of their parents, what could be the outreach?

It would involve at least 80 crore people. When a student writes the pledge, he internalises the content. When parents sign it, they wish to know the contents. Hence it leads to a discussion at home. It is a simple step forward but imagine how meaningful it is.

This is one more experiment of Build India Group to promote oneness- one India- indivisible forever.

If you like this idea, kindly join us in this exercise and share with us the experience. We will certainly value it as true citizens of this country. That is our commitment.