Moscow, Oct 2 (UNI) The new Indian ambassador to Russia, Mr Prabhat Shukla, today unveiled a statue of Mahatma Gandhi on the occasion of his 138th birth anniversary, in his first official engagement.
''I am very happy that we are observing today the 138th birth anniversary of the Father of Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. This augurs well for the first day of my assignment as ambassador in Moscow,'' Mr Shukla said in his remark before the inauguration of the statue.
He said, '' We are really marking something quite special which is not only important for Indians but also ''reflects the deep cultural ties and friendship that binds India and Russia.'' Mr Shukla thanked Russian sculptor A D Ryabichev for his outstanding work with respect to the statue.
Indians in large number and Embassy staff attended the unveiling ceremony.
Students of the Kendriya Vidyalaya (Central School) in Moscow, sang the song ''De Di Hamein Azadi Bina Khadag, Bina Dhal, Sabarmati Ke Sant''.
The unveiling of the statue was followed by an exhibition of works of Ryabichev. A film on Non-Violence by Moscow Centre of Humanist Studies was also shown in Embassy's D P Dhar Hall.
Earlier, Mr Shukla presented the copy of his credentials to the Russian Foreign Ministry.