South African President Jacob Zuma has lauded the role played by a Hindu organisation in the country’s fight against oppression during the Independence struggle.
In a message delivered on the occasion of centenary celebrations of The South African Hindu Maha Sabha (SAHMS) here,Zuma praised the group for it’s pioneering role in shaping the country’s democratic institution.
The SAHMS has played a significant role in the fight against oppression in the dark days before freedom in 1994 and since then played an even more pivotal role in shaping our democratic dispensation,based on equal rights and human dignity for all, Zuma said in a National daily.
All faiths are essential for nurturing the soul and spirit of a nation but the Hindu faith in particular symbolises tolerance and peaceful co-existence. We are always encouraged by this and other principles as so outstandingly set out in the Bhagavad Gita, Zuma said.
SAHMS was founded by Swami Shankarananda,who came to South Africa from India in 1908 on the invitation of Arya Samaj Movement,one of the bigggest Hindu associations at that time.
Three years after arriving in the country,Shankarananda spearheaded the birth of SAHMS when more than 300 delegates from across the country attended a conference in Durban,where majority of Indians lived.
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