/ins This year marks the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948), leader of India’s freedom struggle, who stood for values such as non-violence, truth and peaceful coexistence. Gandhi’s contributions spanned across economics, spirituality, ecology, conflict resolution, politics, human rights, education and more.
To honour his extraordinary legacy, the Government of India is gifting a life-size statue portraying Mahatma Gandhi to the Government of Finland. The statue was specially commissioned by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). The installation of the statue also coincides with 70 years of diplomatic relations between India and Finland.
The City of Helsinki has cooperated with the Embassy of India in Finland and the Government of Finland, among other things, by providing a location for the statue in Allotrianpuisto, Helsinki.
The statue portrays Mahatma Gandhi in his iconic simple attire. The bronze statue is 185 cm tall and stands on a pedestal made of Finnish ‘Baltic Brown’ granite. It has been designed and sculpted by the Indian sculptor Gautam Pal, whose works, including numerous statues and busts of Mahatma Gandhi, India’s Nobel laureate in Literature Rabindranath Tagore, and other important figures of Indian history, can be found in cities all over the world.
The Gandhi statue will be unveiled on Friday 20 September at 1630 hrs, at Allotrianpuisto, Hämeentie 57, by Dr. S. Jaishankar, India’s Minister of External Affairs, Mr Pekka Haavisto, Finland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Ms Pia Pakarinen, the Deputy Mayor of the City of Helsinki.
As part of the ceremony, members of the Indian community will sing Vaishnava Janah Toh, which was Mahatma Gandhi’s favorite prayer hymn.
Embassy of India, Liisa Virén,
tel. 09 228 99117