New Delhi, Oct 2 (UNI) For the first time in history, Nobel Foundation has officially regretted not giving a Nobel Prize to Mahatama Gandhi, saying there was none more ''stark omission than this''.
''The only missing laureate we had is Gandhi. It's a big regret that he did not get it( Nobel Prize), that is very clear,'' admitted Nobel Foundation Exectuive Director Michael Sohlam in an interview to news channel CNN-IBN.
The mistake was admitted in an unequivocal expression: ''It was a mistake by the Norwegian Peace Committee.'' '' There is a long list of Indians who were considered and debated at different points of time and yet never made to the list, possibly reducing the weightage that the Nobel would have for many.
Of the misses, there was none more stark in its omission than that of Mahatama Gandhi,'' Mr Solhman said.
Mr Solhman agreed with the interviewer as saying that there are speculations that race played a major role -- laureates were exclusively selected from United States and Europe.
''There was a very narrow vision at that time...I usually do not comment on what the Nobel Committee or prize awarding institutions decide. But they themselves think he (Mahatama Gandhi) is the only one missing,'' he said.
Mr Solhman is the grandson of Ragnar Solhman, the man who executed Alfred Nobel's will after his death, which resulted in creation of the Nobel Prize.
At the Nobel Museum, Curator and Director Dr Andres Barany was quoted by the chennel as saying: '' The irony is that eminent personalities, who based their actions on the Mahatama's teachings, were awarded the Nobel in later years. Mahatama Gandhi is the one we miss the most at Nobel Museum...that is a empty space where we should have had Mahatama Gandhi.. I think it was a mistake. I think they could have made up for that little difference.'' Mr Barany is also a member of the committee which chooses the Nobel Prize for physics and chemistry every year.
Mahatama Gandhi was nominated five times for the Nobel but the Norwegian Nobel Committee believed that the champion of non-violence could not be awarded because he was ''niether a real politician nor a humantarian relief worker''.
But at the time Mahatam Gandhi died, rules stated that a candidate had to be alive till February 1 to be considered.