Institute of Jainology has been celebrating the Ahimsa Day at House of Commons for the past five years. This event is sponsored by Parliamentary Friends of India from all three major political parties. Members of the Inter Faith organisations, representatives of the Institutions like British Library, Victoria & Albert Museum, Kings College with which are actively engaged and leaders and members of the local Jain community attend the event.
Last year, when United Nations declared Mahatma Gandhi's birthdate of 2nd October as the Universal Ahimsa Day, our Institute also decided to make annual awards to international personalities who had made significant contribution to the theme of our celebration that year.
Every year we chose a theme based on one of the cardinal principles of Jain philosophy. Last year, our theme was 'Non Violence - Ahimsa' and we made two awards, one to His holiness Dalai Lama and the other to Dr Nelson Mandela.
This year our theme is based on the Jain principle of compassion, 'Alleviation of Global Poverty'. This is also one of the goals set by the United Nations and supported very strongly by the British Government
Our keynote speaker this year will be Lord David Puttnam of Queensgate, CBE, the President of UNICEF UK.
Our annual award this year will be presented Acharya Mahapragyaji, a Jain monk who has walked right across India to raise awareness of the sufferings of the poor over last several years. He had spent considerable time with the last President of India, Dr Abdul Kalam to develop ways and means to alleviate these sufferings. His representative will give the Jain perspective on compassion and the means to alleviate the poverty.
Ahimsa Day Celebrations 15th October 200819:00 – 21:00Portcullis House House of Commons