Defacing Peace: Khalistan extremists vandalize Mahatma Gandhi statue in Italy

Khalistan. Photo Courtesy:

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IBNS-CMEDIA: In a concerning development just days before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s anticipated attendance at the G7 Summit in Italy, reports emerged of the vandalization of a statue of Mahatma Gandhi by Khalistani separatists.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) promptly addressed the issue, expressing deep concern over the act of vandalism.

Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra stated that the MEA has raised the matter with Italian authorities and acknowledged that steps have been taken to rectify the situation. “We have seen the reports and taken it up with the Italian authorities. We understand that a suitable rectification has already been made. The effort to vandalize the statue, which is, of course, deplorable, has been addressed and the necessary rectification done,” Kwatra affirmed.

This incident echoes a pattern of targeted actions preceding Prime Minister Modi’s international engagements. Just last year, ahead of his visit to Australia, Khalistani extremists defaced the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Sydney’s Rosehill with anti-India graffiti.

The timing of such incidents, occurring just before significant diplomatic events involving India, raises questions about their underlying motivations.

The desecration of cultural symbols, such as the recent vandalization of Mahatma Gandhi’s statue by Khalistani separatists, stands in stark contradiction to the core values of Sikhism as preached by the revered Gurus. Sikhism, founded on principles of compassion, equality, and respect for all humanity, condemns acts of violence and intolerance. The teachings of the Gurus emphasize the importance of recognizing the divine spark in every individual and fostering harmony within society. Such acts of vandalism not only betray the ethos of Sikhism but also tarnish its rich legacy of peace and social justice.

The desecration is not only an attack on the nation’s values but also a deliberate attempt to disrupt diplomatic efforts and sow discord. Mahatma Gandhi, revered globally as a champion of peace and non-violence, symbolizes India’s enduring commitment to these principles. Therefore, the defacement of his statue strikes a chord beyond national borders, resonating with all who uphold the values of tolerance and harmony.

Prime Minister Modi’s upcoming presence at the G7 Summit holds significant diplomatic importance, presenting an opportunity for India to engage with global leaders on critical issues ranging from climate change to economic cooperation. However, the shadow of such incidents casts a pall over the spirit of collaboration and mutual respect that underpins international relations.

As India prepares to participate in the Outreach Sessions of the G7 Summit, it underscores the imperative for concerted efforts to combat forces that seek to undermine the principles of peace and unity. The swift response of Indian authorities in addressing the vandalism in Italy demonstrates the nation’s commitment to safeguarding its heritage and promoting constructive dialogue on the global stage.

In the face of such challenges, solidarity among nations becomes paramount. Beyond political affiliations, the preservation of cultural symbols and the values they represent should unite countries in a shared commitment to uphold dignity, diversity, and mutual respect.

The incident serves as a reminder of the ongoing battle against extremist ideologies that seek to divide communities and disrupt international harmony. It reinforces the need for vigilance and collaboration in countering such threats, not only to protect tangible symbols but also to safeguard the intangible values they embody.

As Prime Minister Modi prepares to address the G7 Summit, his message of cooperation and inclusivity resonates with renewed urgency. In the pursuit of a more peaceful and prosperous world, it is imperative for nations to stand together against forces that seek to sow discord and division. Only through collective action can the ideals of tolerance, peace, and unity prevail over the forces of hatred and extremism.

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