People take pledge to fight poverty, support MDGs

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New Delhi, Oct 17 (UNI) Thousands of people today stood up and took pledge to fight poverty and in support of the Millennium Development Goals by creating awareness about them.

Participating in the United Nations' 'Stand Up and Speak Out Movement', they added their voice to the Art Of Living and the UN movement which was aimed at mobilising more than four million people across the globe to support the MDGs.

The Art of Living organised several public events in over 100 countries where people from all walks of life came together and took a pledge in support of this movement.

As a key initiative of the United Nations, the Millennium Campaign supports citizens' efforts for the achievement of the eight goals or the MDGs, which was formally adopted by 189 countries in 2000. These goals are: Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger, Achieve Universal Primary Education, Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women, Reduce Child Mortality, Improve Maternal Health, Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other Diseases, Ensure Environmental Sustainability and Develop a Global Partnership for Development.

The event here drew people from all ages and walks of life.

School children, youths, adults and even old people turned out in large numbers to add their voice to this global social movement.

Addressing the crowds, Ms Indu Sinha, a senior member of the Art of Living said the world leaders had pledged to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. ''We are here to remind them of that pledge and tell them that each one of us is with them at every step.'' Vineet Joshi, UNMC representative, said the most important thing was that today people stood together making this movement become stronger and subsequently help achieve the MDGs.

Later, several cultural programmes, including an Odissi dance recital called 'Buddha- the message of peace' by Madhumita Rawat, dance performances by Gilles Chuyen and Tariq titled 'Inner revolutionn', a dance drama titled Shabri by 'Aparna', poetry by Dr Nirmala Devi and Ms Barkha Singh and a rock satsang by Sreeju were held.

An art exhibition was also held. All the paintings were based on the campaign theme to create awareness in society.

In his message, Art of Living founder Sri Sri Ravishankar exhorted everyone to join the campaign. He said all the nations of the world had come together and set up eight Millennium Development Goals and it would remain just a dream if people did not stand up and participate. ''We all have to join together to eradicate poverty, to bring primary education, health, hygiene, care for the environment and make this world a more beautiful place to be in,'' he said.

UNI

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