Lawmakers and political leaders from New Zealand, India, Sri Lanka and other countries have stressed the importance of following the Teachings of Mahatma Gandhi and adopt his leadership style based on honesty, goodwill and non-violence.
More than 550 people, including officials of the UN agencies and international NGOs and youngsters are attending the first ever two-day Conference that will conclude at Novotel Hitech Hyderabad, Capital City of the Telangana State on January 20, 2019.
The Conference was hosted by Kalvakuntla Kavitha, elected Member of Lok Sabha (Lower House of Indian Parliament) from the Nizamabad Constituency and Founder-President of Telangana Jagruthi under the theme, ‘Telangana Jagruthi International Leadership Conference,’ under the theme, ‘The Gandhian Path to Sustainability & Innovation.’
UN Global Compact, UN Women, UNICEF, Centre for Civil Society, UN Gender, Right Management, SGB Academy and several national and international NGOs supported the event at which Anna Hazare, a social activist, who stirred national awareness with his ‘Anti-Corruption Movement’ and Rural Development Campaign in 2011, was the Chief Guest.
Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi
“Mahatma Gandhi and his Teachings are as relevant today as they were in the 20th Century. He led India to freedom through a bloodless revolution, encouraging people to adopt peaceful means. He inspired the younger members of the society to become leaders of their communities, society and the country adhering to principles of honesty, integrity and accountability and remain dynamic and responsive to the needs of India. Today, as we salute one of the greatest leaders of the modern world, I hope that this Conference will encourage the young people of Telangana and indeed the entire world to promote good leadership values so that we can all live in peace and harmony,” he said.
Mr Bakshi also spoke of the responsibilities of the younger generation and how they can become good leaders of the future.
Mr Hazare shared his experience as a young man following the Gandhian way of life and spoke of the need to lift the lot of the rural people in India and stimulate the youth into positive action for positive change in Indian polity and community.
“Gandhiji was very insistent that we should not exploit nature for our material benefit. This is very significant today,” he said.
The Model Village
He also spoke of his native Village ‘Ralegan Siddhi’ (in the Parner Taluka in Ahmednagar District) in Maharashtra and how it has now become a fully-developed city and a model to the rest of the country.
“This Village has followed the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi. It has learnt the Rain Harvest Programme, Water Conservation and proper irrigation. Less than ten years ago, this village was barren; today, more than 600 acres are being cultivated; the village which once was starving, today send out 150 trucks of fresh vegetables to other parts of the State,” he said.
“Telangana Jagruthi is hosting this International Leadership Conference in the hope that it will be an instrument of change. While I am happy that we have brought together more than 550 delegates, I am not fine that 22,000 children are dying throughout the world every year; I am not fine that more than 800 million people are suffering hunger daily; I am not fine with the fact that we breathe polluted air every day; I am not fine that there is war in the modern world,” she said.
World Youth Power
Stating that everyone should take charge of the responsibility of emancipating the world of the problems that we have created, Ms Kavitha said that we need a network of intellectuals and young leaders who can lead the world and make it a better place.
“The 550 delegates present here could be a solution to our problem. The world population today is youthful, with about 42% under the age of 25. We have more than 1,8 billion youngsters in today’s world of who one in five are in the 16-29 age group. However, it is unfortunate that 90% of them live in poor or underdeveloped countries. Youth mortality is five times higher in poor countries. They do not have decent education, healthcare and employment. They deal with violence in their daily lives. The future of young women is even more precarious,” he said.
With Reporting by Jyothi Muddam, President, Telangana Jagruthi New Zealand
Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi with Kalvakuntla Kavitha in Hyderabad, India on January 19, 2019