President Pranab Mukherjee conferred the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development on former President of the Federative Republic of Brazil, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, at a function organized here today.
The President stated that this prestigious award celebrates the legacy of the former Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi as an untiring crusader for global peace, universal disarmament and a new international economic order.
The prize has been awarded to Lula da Silva for his contribution to the cause of eliminating hunger and promoting inclusive growth in Brazil, for his advocacy of stronger ties among the developing economies and for his signal contribution to the cause of the India-Brazil partnership.
Remembering Indira Gandhi on the occasion, Mukherjee in his address said: "Thanks to her bold initiatives, the Indian economy today, is more resilient and confident. Two decades of steady economic reforms have contributed to an improvement in average income and consumption levels in both rural and urban areas. There is a newfound dynamism in some of the most backward areas - bringing them into the national economic mainstream."
"Shrimati Indira Gandhi shall be remembered for her untiring efforts at maintaining cohesion, unity and enhanced economic co-operation among developing nations, their autonomous development, collective self reliance and equitable and democratic dialogue between the North and South. In her interventions at international fora, she was admired as a moderator and conciliator," President said.
Mukherjee admired the former Brazilian President and said: "President Lula has been a transformative figure in Brazil. With his own unique life story of rising from humble origins to the highest level in the country and to international recognition as a world Statesman, he has inspired millions of his countrymen."
"His energetic and dynamic international engagement has been anchored on empathy and solidarity with the developing world. Starting with all of South America and with efforts at greater unity in the countries of that continent, President Lula forged stronger links with Africa recognising the historical and economic bonds of Brazil with many African countries," added Mukherjee.
The Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development is awarded annually to a person or organization without any distinction of nationality, race or religion, in recognition of creative efforts towards enlarging the scope of freedom and enriching the human spirit. It consists of an award of Rs. 2.5 million and a trophy with a citation. (ANI)