NELSON MANDELA INTERNATIONAL DAY

VINODCHANDRASHEKHAR DIXIT

Nelson Mandela International day

The world will be celebrating Nelson Mandela International Day on July 18 — Mandela’s birth anniversary. Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was a South African revolutionary leader and freedom fighter who played an important role in ending apartheid in the country. Mandela Day is a global call to action for citizens of the world to take up the challenge and follow in the formidable footsteps of Madiba, a man who transformed his life, served his country and freed his people. Its objective is to inspire individuals to take action to help change the world for the better and in so doing, to build a global movement for good. It is a day not only to honour the man himself, but also a chance for us to join the global movement to make the world a better place. Mandela himself was a global icon not only of democracy but pluralism, and his triumph seemed to spell the end of an era of authoritarianism and ethnic nationalism. Because of their efforts, the white supremacist government was finally overthrown and Nelson Mandela became the first president of a multi-racial democratic South Africa in 1994. He was also the country’s first black president. He died on 5th December 2013, aged 95. He will always be remembered as an icon of democracy and social justice.

He wanted the basic and honourable freedom of achieving his potential of earning his keep, of marrying and having a family. He believed that freedom is indivisible. Everyone has to be free.Most of us know the facts of his life: his fight against apartheid, his imprisonment for 27 years first at Robben Island, then at Pollsmoor Prison and finally at Victor Verser Prison, how he became the first Black President of South Africa, his winning the Nobel Peace Prize etc. Sentenced to life imprisonment, Mandela became a powerful symbol of resistance for the rising anti-apartheid movement, repeatedly refusing to compromise his political position to obtain his freedom.Nelson Mandela of South Africa was an icon for modern democracy. He was a champion for rights of all humans. He showed to the world that all souls are created equal without any strings attached. He was a leader with a difference. A real leader according to him works and serves the people making them know about their strengths. He was not for ‘power’, ‘money’ or ‘greed’. This humble soul was created for benefit of other souls who were suffering. He said, ‘it is an ideal which I hope to live for and to see it realised. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die’.
Mandela followed three rules throughout his life, which he did at great personal sacrifice: [1] Free yourself, [2] Free others & [3] Serve every day. His greatest legacy is perhaps his commitment to the redemptive powers of hope and struggle. Peace was his motive.
He achieved objectives for benefits of all mankind without ‘violence and killings’ which is a lesson to everybody in present day world. He showed to world how humanity can be achieved through peace without violence and killings. In 1975 he wrote letter from prison “The cell is an ideal place to learn to know yourself,” & “Never forget that a saint is a sinner who keeps on trying.” Mandela was a liberator of the stature of Gandhi. Both shared a common vision and passion for the breaking away of the shackles of tyranny and oppression. Both stand as stalwarts of our proximate history. Many people have been inspired by the South African movement, especially their decision to forgive and move on. He was awarded India’s highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna in 1990 for his role in the anti-apartheid movement. Apart from Pakistan’s Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, Mandela was the only non-Indian to have received the award. To honour the extraordinary life of Nelson Mandela and to keep his legacy of peace, truth, and reconciliation alive, the United Nations instituted the Nelson Mandela World Humanitarian Award in 2014.
He was a super human being and an architecture of Modern South Africa and the world. Mandela will always be remembered as a saint, a sage of humanity in line with Mahatma Gandhi. Mandela was one of the greatest leaders in the world and he will always be remembered as an icon of democracy and social justice. Hope our present and future generations learn from his great experiments with struggle for oppressed and downtrodden.