New Delhi: On the birthday of Nelson Mandela on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid homage to the late South African icon, saying it is an occasion to reaffirm commitment to work towards world peace.
"The beloved Madiba`s work, ideals and principles continue to inspire us. He demonstrated the triumph of peace, equality and service," Modi said.
The birthday of the leader, who died in December last at the age of 95, is celebrated as `Nelson Mandela International Day` as declared by the UN.
The Prime Minister said `Mandela Day` is "not only a day to remember the great man himself but also to reaffirm our commitment to work towards world peace."
In Johannesburg, a digital exhibition featuring the lives of Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela kicked off a month-long Indian festival today that will celebrate the strong bonds between India and South Africa.
Hosted jointly by the South African Ministry of Arts and Culture and the Indian High Commission, the festival will see various Indian arts and cultural activities being taken beyond the major cities of the country, as has largely been the case in the past with visiting Indian artists.
South Africans marked the day today with charitable acts, like picking up litter, cooking at homes for the elderly and donating food, blankets and other basic necessities to the poor.