SECAUCUS, NEW JERSEY, May 13, 2014 (Hudson Reporter): A life-sized statue of Mahatma Gandhi will be dedicated to the state at a ceremony in Secaucus on Saturday, May 31. The statue was hand crafted in India from a single piece of rock, and is a gift to the state of New Jersey from Secaucus residents Shantaben, Maneklal, Raj, and Parul Patel of the Swaminarayan Temple. The monument will be located at the entrance to the Sadhu Vaswani Meditation Garden at the Recreation Center on Koelle Boulevard in Secaucus.
In keeping with Gandhi's teaching of Ahimsa (nonviolence), the event is being co-sponsored by The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). The dedication ceremony will be conducted by Revered Dada J.P. Vaswani, who will deliver the keynote address following the ceremony. HSUS President and CEO Wayne Pacelle will also speak, and the two will engage in a town hall-style meeting with the audience.
Several state and local officials, as well as dignitaries from American and Indian institutions across the United States, are expected to grace the occasion. Among them is United States Congresswoman and war veteran Tulsi Gabbard, who said, "Gandhi is the world's most famous Hindu, but the impact that he made throughout his life spans far beyond any one sect or religion. As just one example, he made a profound impact on Dr. [Martin Luther] King who actually went and visited India, providing inspiration in the civil rights movement here at home."