Meira Kumar: Khadi empowered Indians to seek freedom

New Delhi, Sep 27, 2010 (Calcutta Tube) Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar Sunday said that it was khadi and the charkha that empowered the ‘humblest and simplest’ people of India to wage a non-violent freedom struggle.

‘If cloth empowers you then it is incumbent upon you to empower those who create the cloth by fulfilling their hopes, aspirations and demands,’ she said while inaugurating an exhibition on textiles ‘Power Cloths of the Commonwealth’.

The Lok Sabha speaker said that the cloth as a basic need of the human being knows no boundaries and is instrumental in making people fight for their rights.

Referring to Sufi Saint Kabir, Meira Kumar said that it was this simple cloth which he spun himself that empowered him so much that he could challenge and take on ‘orthodoxy and obscurantism’.

Australian High Commissioner Peter Varghese said that this exhibition by Suzanne Davis and Jasleen Dhamija ‘signalled importance of bridging the cultural distance between Australia and India’.

‘Bridging cultural distance, learning more about each other, recognising what brings us together and what makes us unique – these are the big challenges of the age of globalisation,’ the Australian high commissioner said.

Varghese said: ‘As we are all bound more closely together by the power of global economy we must also learn more about each other.’

Exhibitions were a good medium for such an interaction, he said.

The exhibition showcases textiles from 15 Commonwealth countries spread over five continents.

The exhibition has been organised by the union textiles ministry, Australian government and RMIT Gallery, Melbourne, to celebrate the XIX Commonwealth Games starting in New Delhi from Oct 3.

The exhibited textile items have been sourced from major museums and private collections from participating Commonwealth countries.

The exhibition presents a selection of key historical and contemporary works which have not been exhibited earlier. The exhibition housed in the craft museum at Pragati Maidan will be open to public till Oct 20.

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