Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in a message on the occasion of Nelson Mandela International Day, which is celebrated July 18, said: "Mahatma Gandhi had honed his skills as a young lawyer in Nelson Mandela's homeland."
Bound countries are bound by history and "more than a billion Indian hearts rejoice and take pride in the life and mission of Nelson Mandela, which stand for ideals that are enduring and universal in their appeal and relevance".
"The outpouring of love and the countless prayers that we have seen in recent days for Nelson Mandela only prove that there is something very deep and abiding in the human spirit that binds us across borders. Today, we stand with our African brothers and sisters in wishing Nelson Mandela a speedy recovery and good health."
The message was read out at the UN by Ambassador Asoke Kumar Mukerji, permanent representative of India to the UN, during a special event of the UN General Assembly. India was the first country invited to speak at the special event.
On the occasion, India complimented all member states of the UN for celebrating the values that Nelson Mandela has dedicated his life to.
"These values of peace, pluralism, justice, equality and dignity are also embodied in the United Nations Charter. In proclaiming 18 July as the Nelson Mandela International Day, the United Nations paid tribute to a great citizen of the world."
UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon addressed the event and the key note address was delivered by former US president Bill Clinton.