Director-General expresses deep sadness at the passing of Madanjeet Singh, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, has expressed deep sadness at the news that UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Madanjeet Singh passed away on Sunday 6 January.
“Mr Singh’s untiring efforts and personal commitment to fostering mutual understanding and peace have served as a great source of inspiration to people of many different nations, cultures and religions. UNESCO has lost a true friend and great supporter,” said the Director General.
In 1995, in recognition of his lifelong devotion to the cause of communal harmony and peace, UNESCO’s Executive Board created the UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence. The decision was adopted to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi.
A longstanding diplomat, Mr Madanjeet Singh was designated as a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in November 2000 in recognition of his promotion of tolerance and mutual understanding worldwide and especially in South Asia.
Madanjeet Singh created the South Asia Foundation in 2000 as a youth movement to promote sustainable cultural, educational and economic development throughout the region. It now has chapters in all eight South Asian countries and offers scholarships in its twelve UNESCO Madanjeet Singh Institutions of Excellence.
“I wish to express my heartfelt condolences to the family of Mr Madanjeet Singh as well as the Government and people of India for the loss of this great humanist, this great defender of peace,” said the Director-General. “The passing of Madanjeet Singh is a loss to India, to the region, and to all people across the world. Let us take strength from the message of dialogue and mutual understanding that he embodied and that he promoted to strengthen the foundations for peace and tolerance.”