International Day for Tolerance 2021: Importance of day for fostering mutual understanding
The day began as an initiative to affirm that tolerance is an appreciation of the world’s cultures and also recognises human rights and the freedom of others.
International Day for Tolerance is marked and observed on 16 November annually in order to foster mutual understanding among cultures and people.
The day began as an initiative to affirm that tolerance is an appreciation of the world’s cultures and also recognizes human rights and freedom of others. This day is observed by understanding the inclusivity behind different religions, languages and cultures. It also educates people to not develop any feelings of fear, exclusion or xenophobia towards other ethnicities and cultures.
What is the importance of this day?
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) believes that tolerance is our moral obligation and deems it necessary for maintaining equal treatment and opportunities for all groups and citizens of a society.
As per the global body, tolerance would help us develop critical thinking and also promote ideas of non-violence. Instead of the wide criticism and hatred that has been on the rise towards other communities, International day for Tolerance understands that we live in a beautifully diverse world that consists of mixed communities and we should treasure this diversity.
The theme for International Day for Tolerance, according to News18, is based on respect, acceptance and appreciation for the rich diversity of our world’s cultures and of expressions.
History of International Day of Tolerance:
In the year 1995, United Nations (UN) celebrated the 125 anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s birth along with the UN's Year for Tolerance. For this purpose, UNESCO created a prize which is awarded after every two years on 16 November, on International Day for Tolerance.
The member states were invited by the UN General Assembly to observe International Day for Tolerance on 16 November, 1996. A declaration of Principles on Tolerance and a Follow-up Plan of Action for the Year was also formed.
The global body also instituted an award named the UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence. The award is given to those individuals, institutes, or organizations who promote the spirit of tolerance and contribute in the field of science, art and culture.
The prize is named after its benefactor Madanjeet Singh, a former diplomat and the UNESCO’s Goodwill Ambassador in the year 2000. The winner receives a sum of 100,000 US dollars in an award ceremony every two years on the International Day for Tolerance.
In the year 2020, the award was won by Centre Resolution Conflicts (CRC) who belong to the Democratic Republic of Congo, for their work in human rights.
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