HIGH Commissioner to India Tarcisius Eri says the removal of Mahatma Gandhi’s bust in campus by protesting University of PNG students is outrageous.
Eri, who was instrumental in arranging a visit to PNG by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee last month, has apologised to the Indian community in PNG for what happened. Mukherjee handed over the bust to the PNG Government during his visit which was put up at the UPNG campus.
“As an alumnus of UPNG, I am totally disgusted with the actions of a few students who have completely lost the cause of their boycott by removing the bust of Mahatma Gandhi at the Waigani campus,” he said.
“These students should emulate the actions of Mahatma Gandhi by resorting to peaceful and non-violent protests, which is more powerful than such disgraceful behaviour.
“I wish to inform the student body that Mahatma Gandhi is revered not only in India but all over the world as the icon of non-violence and peaceful protests.
“Renowned icons of non-violence and peaceful protests such as Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela were disciples of Mahatma Gandhi, whose legacies are celebrated by humanity.”
He reminded students in PNG to follow one of Mahatma Gandhi’s mantra: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”.
But a student leader who requested anonymity said yesterday they removed the bust because it did not reflect democracy in PNG as their petition to address the political and economical situation of the nation had been suppressed. The National /ONE PNG