Johannesburg: Special peace prayers have been organised at the Tolstoy Farm, the once-thriving commune set up south of here by Mahatma Gandhi during his tenure, as part of a project to highlight the historic heritage of the South African-Indians.
The prayers were hosted by 150 youths from the Swaminarayan Santha of South Africa. The event was part of a mission by youth of the organisation to visit 25 historic sites across South Africa for peace prayers ahead of a gala weekend celebration to mark the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the first Swaminarayan Mandir in South Africa later this month.
“This sometimes forgotten historic heritage of the South African-Indians, was earmarked by the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha of South Africa as one of the 25 historic landmark sites for their 25 Peace Prayers project,” the organisation said in a statement.
The youth, all dressed in white, chanted prayers invoking peace, prosperity and progress in South Africa. Tolstoy Farm was one of the 25 sites chosen because of the deep links that they hold with the South African-Indian community and its history.
Over the past few months, the peace prayers have been held at several important sites, such as the Constitutional Court of South Africa,(where Gandhi and later Nelson Mandela were once imprisoned as he opposed discriminatory laws); the sugarcane plantations in Natal, (where the first Indians arrived to work as indentured labourers) and the Pietermaritzburg Train Station, (where Gandhi was thrown off a train compartment). PTI
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