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Martyrs' Day: In a Changed, Post-Coronavirus World, How India is Paying Tribute to Mahatma Gandhi

PM Narendra Modi at Rajghat. (File photo)

PM Narendra Modi at Rajghat. (File photo)

Before the coronavirus pandemic struck the world, Martyrs' Day or Shaheed Diwas saw the President, Vice President, Prime Minister and Defence Minister gather at Mahatma Gandhi's Samadhi at Raj Ghat.

Paying tribute to 'Bapu' on his 'Punya Tithi', Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday recalled the "heroic sacrifices of all those great women and men who devoted themselves towards India's freedom". President Ram Nath Kovind urged Indians to adhere to Mahatma Gandhi's ideals of peace, non-violence, simplicity, purity of means and humility.

"Tributes to the great Bapu on his Punya Tithi. His ideals continue to motivate millions. On Martyrs' Day we recall the heroic sacrifices of all those great women and men who devoted themselves towards India’s freedom and the well-being of every Indian," PM Modi said.

"On behalf of a grateful nation, my humble tributes to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi who embraced martyrdom this day. We should adhere to his ideals of peace, non-violence, simplicity, purity of means and humility. Let us resolve to follow his path of truth and love," Kovind tweeted.

Maharashtra deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said that Gandhi revolutionised the freedom struggle in the colonial era by sowing the seeds of 'Ahimsa'.

Vice president Venkaiah Naidu said, "Mahatma Gandhi's core values — the need to rise above casteism, communalism, regionalism and provincialism — should inspire youth today."

Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu tweeted, "Live as if your were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever: #MahatmaGandhi. Tribute to Mahatma Gandhi Ji on his Death Anniversary."

Recalling Gandhi's struggles, former UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav said that his thoughts of non-violence are giving strength to the farmers' protest even today. "Gandhiji's thoughts and experiments of truth and non-violence are still giving strength to the peasant movement. The biggest strength in this struggle is the belief that truth prevails over untruth and that the upholder ultimately supports truth," he said.

Meanwhile, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath also paid tribute to Mahatma Gandhi at the Gandhi Statue in Hazratganj, on his death anniversary today.

Before the coronavirus pandemic struck the world, Martyrs Day or Shaheed Diwas saw the President, Vice President, Prime Minister and Defence Minister gather at Mahatma Gandhi's Samadhi at Raj Ghat. The top-most leaders of the country lay wreaths in remembrance of the Mahatma. They are joined by three service chiefs as well.

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