Gandhi Jayanti is a national holiday celebrated in India to mark the occasion of the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, the “Father of the Nation”.
The United Nations General Assembly announced on 15 June 2007 that it adopted a resolution which declared that October 2 will be celebrated as the International Day of Non-Violence.
Gandhi Jayanti is celebrated on October 2, every year and is one of the three official declared National Holidays of India and is observed in all its states and union territories. The other two are Independence Day (15 August) and Republic Day (26 January). The selling of alcohol is banned on all three days which are designated as Dry Days.
Gandhi Jayanti is marked by prayer services and tributes all over India, especially at Raj Ghat, Gandhi’s memorial in New Delhi where he was cremated.
Popular celebration includes prayer meetings, commemorative ceremonies in different cities by colleges, local government institutions and socio-political institutions.
Painting and essay competitions are conducted and best awards are awarded for projects in schools and the community, on themes of glorifying peace, non-violence and Gandhi’s effort in Indian Freedom Struggle.
Usually, Gandhi’s favourite devotional song, Raghupathi Raghava Rajaram is sung in memory of him.