Gandhigiri with Hamas, Ahmedinejad: Asia caravan to Gaza

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by ejazr, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. ejazr

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    http://www.indianexpress.com/news/gandhigiri-with-hamas-ahmedinejad/735905/0

    The first-ever Asian caravan to Gaza, comprising political activists from India and Pakistan, took the “Gandhigiri” route when they met Iranian lawmakers, including President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, and top Hamas leaders.

    “We did Gandhigiri to tell them about the non-violence mode of resistance... we did our share of pappis and jhappis, and gave them books and portraits of Mahatma Gandhi,” said Feroze Mithiborewala, one of the activists who was part of the month-long caravan.

    They gave copies of Mahatma Gandhi's autobiography, My Experiments with Truth, to top Hamas leaders including Prime Minister Ismail Hani, Foreign Minister Mehmoud Zahar and Political Secretary Khalid Mishal.

    “We also gave these books and Gandhi’s portraits to Iranian lawmakers,” said Mithiborewala, adding that Ahmedinejad was also present at the old building of Iran's Majlis where the activists had an interaction with Iranian lawmakers.The activists also teamed up to sing Gandhi's favourite bhajans “Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram” and “Vaishnava Janato”, and even spun the “charkha”.

    “What made this caravan unique was that it was a group which had atheists, Hindus, Buddhists and other religions. That caught the attention of people in Iran, Syria and Palestine,” said Mithiborewala.

    Describing it as an “international Dandi March”, he said they began their journey from Rajghat on December 2, and reached Gaza on the intervening night of January 2-3, via Pakistan, Iran, Syria and Egypt.

    The activists initially faced problems as Pakistan denied entry at the Wagah border. They were allowed only after the Indian government took up the matter with the Pakistani authorities.

    The group, which included Indian activists like Swapan Ganguly, Suresh Khairnar, Aslam Khan, Sandeep Pandey and several others, took a supply of “humanitarian aid” like medicines, baby food and clothes for the people in Gaza.
     
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