MAHATMA GANDHI TO BE POSTHUMOUSLY AWARDED THE US CONGRESSIONAL GOLD MEDAL
US lawmakers have moved a resolution in the US House of Representatives to posthumously award the Congressional Gold Medal to Mahatma Gandhi for his contribution towards promotion of peace and non-violence.
Out of the 6 US lawmakers, four were Indian Americans. The resolution (HR 6916) was introduced in the US House of Representatives by Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney from New York on 23rd September 2018.
The resolution is co-sponsored by four Indian American lawmakers Ami Bera, Raja Krishnamoorthi, Ro Khanna and Pramila Jayapal.
Tulsi Gabbard is the current co-chair of the House Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans and also one of the co-sponsors of the resolution.
The Congressional Gold Medal is the highest civilian honour given by the US Congress. Very few foreigners have received this award.
CONGRESSIONAL GOLD MEDAL:
A Congressional Gold Medal is an award bestowed by the United States Congress; the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom are the highest civilian awards in the United States.
It is awarded to persons “who have performed an achievement that has an impact on American history and culture that is likely to be recognized as a major achievement in the recipient’s field long after the achievement.”
However, “There are no permanent statutory provisions specifically relating to the creation of Congressional Gold Medals.
When a Congressional Gold Medal has been deemed appropriate, Congress has, by legislative action, provided for the creation of a medal on an ad hoc basis.” American citizenship is not a requirement.
The Congressional Gold Medal is the highest civilian honour given by the US Congress and very few foreigners have been recipients of this award.
Prominent among those include Mother Teresa (1997), Nelson Mandela (1998), Pope John Paul II (2000), the Dalai Lama (2006), Aung San Suu Kyi (2008), Muhammad Yunus (2010) and Shimon Peres (2014).