A group of over two dozen prominent activists and academicians on Saturday discussed the aspects of violence in the present context and argued its philosophical dimensions at Sabarmati Ashram. It was argued that fearlessness, taking a stand and ability to dissent are the some of the aspects that can be nurtured.
The idea behind this gathering is to develop curricula for teaching non-violence in schools and colleges in the coming years. During the discussion it was said that “by and large we all are part of a violent society and people support a violent in many forms, as for example, by paying taxes to the government which goes offensive against its own citizens or an enemy nation”. It was argued that the very idea of a nation and its justification leads to violence like the world wars in the 20th century.
The participants also argued about the forms of violence, citing example of use of pellet guns in Kashmir to control the agitation. They said that idea of pellet guns is to minimise the injuries, instead it caused deaths and blinded people.
Noted historian Shahid Amin, activist Ganesh Devy, former vice-chancellor of Gujarat Vidyapith Sudarshan Iyenger,
Sabarmati Ashram Preservation and Memorial Trust (SAMPT) director Tridip Suhrud and SAMPT trustee Kartikeya Sarabhai among others were present in the discussion.
The discussion will be continued on Sunday at the Ashram where former railway minister Dinesh Trivedi will be participating. Similar discussions will be held in coming days at different places for making a carricula on non-violence. The exercise has been undertaken by SAPMT and Centre for Environmental Education, run by Sarabhai.