Pt. Nehru nurtured democracy like a mother nurtures her child: Sonia Gandhi

Days after the ruling BJP held grand celebrations on the birth anniversary of 'Iron man' Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, it's the Congress party's turn to showcase its political clout. The Congress party will formally kick off a two-day long international conference to commemorate the 125th birth anniversary of country's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru amid much fanfare on Monday.

By Ritesh K Srivastava | Last Updated: Nov 17, 2014, 16:21 PM IST
Pt. Nehru nurtured democracy like a mother nurtures her child: Sonia Gandhi

New Delhi: Days after the ruling BJP held grand celebrations on the birth anniversary of 'Iron man' Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, it's the Congress party's turn to showcase its political clout. The Congress party formally kicked off a two-day long international conference to commemorate the 125th birth anniversary of country's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru amid much fanfare on Monday.

Here are the live updates: 

  • Under Nehru's leadership, India launched its most active phase in International Diplomacy which is unmatched till date: Saran
  • Nehru's passionate advocacy of 'One World' has got less attention, he was architect of that concept:Saran
  • Nehru was ahead of his time that rapid technological change was blurring regional boundaries: Saran
  • I consider Nehru as one of the greatest Indians: Saran
  • Former foreign secy Shyam Saran addresses the conference
  • India sent us a lawyer, we sent back a Mahatma: Esoop Gulam Pahad
  • “Inclusive Democracy and People's Empowerment" being chaired by Esoop Goolam Pahad
  • Nehru's approach that developing countries should work together is now germinating. BRICS is a very good example: Dr Karan Singh
  • "Nehru's World View and a Democratic International Order for the 21st Century" being chaired by Dr Karan Singh

  • Former PM HD Deve Gowda, CPI(M) Gen Sec Shri Prakash Karat and Congress VP Rahul Gandhi seen seated during he conference

  • Ex-Nepal PM Madahav K Nepal addresses the conference
  • Former Head of State, Ghana HE John Kufour addresses the International Conference
  • Queen mother of Bhutan, Her Majesty Dorji Wangmo Wangchuk addresses the International Conference
  • Ex-Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai addresses inaugural session of International Conference
  • Sonia Gandhi concludes her speech
  • Democracy was Pandit Nehru's greatest achievement for India: Sonia
  • Pandit Nehru was a Socialist by nature but an Individualist by temper: Sonia
  • 'His ultimate objective was not merely India's freedom but human freedom'  
  • "Universal adult suffrage, secular state and fundamental rights were the bedrock of Pt Nehru's India''
  • Nehru was once compared to a sculptor, called upon to work on a massive block of granite encompassing 1/6th of human race: Sonia
  • “Nehru's achievements continue to bear fruit, he moulded a new intellectual outlook, a new social sensibility”
  • There could be no Indianness, no India,without secularism: Sonia
  • Secularism -a state neutral in matters of religion, respecting all faiths equally-was an article of faith with Nehru, says Sonia
  • Nehru was a synthesis of the East & West, a man of ideas & action: Sonia
  • He nurtured democracy like a mother nurtures her child. Sonia
  • Nehru was unrelenting in condemning racism, he strongly raised the case against apartheid in the UN, says Sonia
  • Secularism is a compelling necessity for a country as diverse as India, says Congress chief
  • Nehru's views on politics as the vehicle of transformation brought stability: Sonia
  • Nehru said, " It is better to lose in a right way than to win in a wrong way,” says Sonia
  • “Nehru was a man of letters who interpreted India to the World and the World to India”
  • It has been drowned out by misrepresentation and distortion: Sonia
  • Knowledge about Nehru's life and work has weakened in recent years, says Sonia
  • Ideas that Pandit Nehru stood remains relevant today: Sonia
  • Jawaharlal Nehru was one of the most towering figures of the 21st century: Sonia

Also Read: Secularism a compelling necessity for India: Sonia Gandhi

  • In 1947, India was a new born state, in turmoil after partition. Pandit Nehru brought stability and hope: Sonia
  • Sonia Gandhi opens the two-day international conference on Pt Nehru.
  • Congress' international conference Day 1: Today's theme “Nehru's world view and his legacy: Democracy, inclusion and empowerment”

Barring the NDA allies, the Congress has invited various 'like-minded' political parties from within the country and leaders from abroad for the two-day long international conference on Nehru. TMC chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, AIADMK supremo J Jayalalithaa and JD( U) leader Nitish Kumar, RJD led by Lalu Prasad Yadav, RLD, JD(S) and leaders of the Samajwadi Party have been invited to the conference..

CPM leader Sitaram Yechury, RLD chief Ajit Singh and JD(U)'s KC Tyagi have confirmed their presence at the event. Conspicuously, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's name doesn't feature in the list of invitees.

As per reports, leaders from at least 52 countries have been invited to participate in the conference,  The world leaders who have arrived are President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai, former president of Ghana John Kufour, former President of Nigeria Obasanzo, former Prime Minister of Nepal Sher Bahadur Deuba, Queen Mother of Bhutan Majesty Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck, human rights activist from Pakistan Asma Jehangir.

Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi is leading the Congress delegation in the conference. Congress chief Sonia Gandhi opened the conference whereas former PM Manmohan Singh will make closing remarks.

BJP has been criticising the Congress for its decision not to invite the Prime Minister, which it says “reflected the narrow-mindedness of the party”and is a “disrespect to the nation”. Meanwhile, Congress has also attacked PM Modi in the recent past for attempting to destroy Nehru's secular vision. The Congress leadership has earlier also slammed the Prime Minister for playing politics on the legacy of great leaders of India's freedom movement like Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel.