Pretoria: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday retraced the 1893 train journey between Pentrich and Pietermaritzburg of Mahatma Gandhi.
In a series of tweets, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup confirmed the journey. “Tracing the memory of the Mahatma. On Day 2 in SA, PM arrives in Pentrich, boards train to Pietermaritzburg station,” Swarup tweeted.
“In the footsteps of the Mahatma. PM @narendramodi relives the train journey to Pietermaritzburg,” Swarup said. Prime Minister’S Office (PMO) also tweeted, “PM travels from Pentrich Railway Station to Pietermaritzburg. Train resembles the one on which Gandhi ji travelled.”
He rode in the train for around 15 minutes. In 1893, a young Gandhi was off-loaded from a South African train after he refused an order to move from a first-class carriage because of his race.
The incident shaped Gandhi’s determination to resist racial discrimination and other injustices with non-violent protest. After the ride, Prime Minister Modi on the second day of his engagement here will visit the Phoenix Settlement, which is very closely associated with Mahatma Gandhi.
In the evening, he will join a Civic Reception at Durban City Hall hosted by the High Commissioner and the Mayor of Durban. After wrapping up his engagements here, he will emplane for Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.