Sunday, September 12, 2010

mahatma gandhi's ashes

scattered in s'pore

small photos from national archives of s'pore

i was browsing for photographs of the old clifford pier when i came across these 3 interesting photographs. i just found it hard to believe that the ashes of the great mahatma gandhi were brought to singapore from new delhi via ipoh on a cathay pacific flight to be scattered in the sea off connaught drive.

prior to that, it was on public display for a week at the victoria memorial hall. on the first day, it was up for viewing up to midnight. on subsequent days, viewing stopped at 9.00 p.m. representatives from the main religious groups like hinduism, christianity, buddhism and sikkhism offered prayers. the muslim community offered prayers in their mosques.

on the day, the ashes were to be scattered, large crowds gathered outside clifford pier. rough seas prevented the ashes from being immersed from the big launch which brought them from the shore. the ashes had to be transferred to a smaller marine boat.

the indian government representative in singapore mr john thivy performed the ceremony. he poured the water from the ganges river into the urn containing the ashes, dipped the urn into the sea, took it out and scattered the ashes.

as mr thivy immersed the ashes, hundreds of people, in about 20 private chartered launches, joined in a mad rush to sip the water around as a last token of homage to mahatma gandhi.

the ashes of mahatma gandhi were split into many portions. most of the ashes were scattered in india but some were scattered overseas and singapore was one of those countries to receive the ashes.

the last scattering of mahatma gandhi's ashes was carried out this year (2010). his ashes, kept for decades by a family friend, were scattered off the coast of south africa on the 62nd anniversary of his death.

mahatma gandhi was assassinated by a hindu fanatic on 30 january 1948.


Andy Young* said...

Your posting is news to me. Truly an important piece of information.

We have an affinity with a sincere and genuine man of Peace.

yg said...

andy, i think he was a truly great man. mahatma (great soul) was a title bestowed upon him by his people. his name was mohandas karamchand gandhi.

Anonymous said...

Interesting piece of information thank you for sharing