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The International Day of Human Fraternity: A Pathway 

to the Future

(1100 – 1230 hrs; February 4, 2021)


Statement by Ambassador T.S. Tirumurti

Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations




I am pleased to join you all today at this special event dedicated to the celebration of the first International Day of Human Fraternity. 


We also express our sincere appreciation to United Arab Emirates and Egypt for sponsoring and piloting the resolution 75/200 which proclaimed February 4 as the International Day of Human Fraternity. India was happy to co-sponsor this important resolution commemorating the meeting between His Holiness Pope Francis and His Eminence Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Sheikh Ahmad Al-Tayyib in Abu Dhabi


As we also commemorate the World Interfaith Harmony Week, this is an opportune moment for us to reflect on the perils of rise in intolerance, hatred, violence and terrorism which we witness in today’s world. It is therefore the need of the hour that we as comity of nations deepen our mutual cooperation and understanding to promote human fraternity.




The ancient Indian text, the Rig Veda, which goes back into our civilization, has espoused the principle of fraternity when it says: “No one is superior or inferior; all are brothers (and sisters); and we should strive for the interest of all and progress collectively.”


The Constitution of India also gives a place of pride to “Fraternity” when it states in the Preamble that it is “Fraternity” that assures the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the nation. 


India’s multicultural edifice has been curated by tolerance, mutual respect and understanding for different religions, cultures and people of all walks of life. Over centuries, we have given refuge to all nationalities and religions.  It is this accommodation and tolerance for all pluralistic traditions that has cultivated the spirit of fraternity in our country. 




We must ensure that inter-religious and inter-civilizational dialogues are inclusive, broad and encompasses all faiths not just a select few as it is happening now. 


We must stand united against the dark forces that speak the language of violence, exclusivism and terrorism. 


I conclude by quoting from Mahatma Gandhi: “I want cultures of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.”


I thank you.