India inaugurates its Gandhi-themed pavilion at COP 25

New Delhi, Dec 3 (PTI) India Pavilion of the theme '150 years of Mahatma Gandhi' was inaugurated at the 25th session of Conference of Parties under the UN Framework Convention of Climate Change (UNFCCC COP25) in Madrid on Tuesday.

Union Environment Secretary C K Mishra, who inaugurated the pavilion, said the theme was chosen to mark the 150th birth anniversary of Gandhi this year and spread his teachings of simple and sustainable living.

'The India Pavilion has been designed to depict this theme, in particular Mahatma Gandhi's life and messages around sustainable living,' Mishra was quoted as saying in a press note issued by the ministry.

The Environment Ministry said that the Indian pavilion has a conceptual model of Gandhi Ji's ashram, where his philosophy of minimising wants and living with simplicity is espoused.

'The pavilion also depicts the present and traces the arc into the future of the country, where Government of India is implementing ambitious solutions to deal with the issue of climate change, inspired by the teachings of the Mahatma, and our cultural underpinnings based on the principles of sustainable consumption and production.

'As such, the pavilion has a special focus on 'sustainable lifestyles' as a solution to climate change,' the ministry said.

In his address, Mishra said the pavilion features the humble 'charkha' or the spinning wheel which is the physical embodiment of the Gandhian principles of perseverance, self-sufficiency and sustainability.

The secretary invited delegates and participants representing 197 countries to try their hand at spinning the 'fabric of sustainability' at the India Pavilion, the ministry officials said.

Mishra said over the next 10 days, India will organise 20 side events in the pavilion on important issues for climate change adaptation and mitigation, adding that the India Pavilion will provide a platform for exchange of innovative ideas for the world to come together and combat climate change.

'It is crucial that we find ways to combat climate change not just through modern technologies but with the wisdom of our collective cultural tradition and hoping that concrete steps are taken to promote sustainable lifestyles and climate justice globally,' he said.

Indian government has recently said that in the COP 25 it would stress upon the need for fulfilling pre-2020 commitments by developed countries and that pre-2020 implementation gaps should not present an additional burden to developing countries in the post-2020 period.

The UNFCCC COP 25 being held in Madrid, Spain (under the Presidency of Chile) opened on Monday and will go on till December 13.

The Indian delegation will be led by Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar.

COP 25 holds significance as countries prepare to move from pre-2020 period under Kyoto Protocol to post-2020 period under Paris Agreement.

India's approach will be guided by principles and provisions of UNFCCC and Paris Agreement, particularly the principles of Equity and Common But Differentiated Responsibilities and Respective Capability (CBDR-RC), a ministry official had said. PTI AG AAR