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Mahatma Gandhi wanted to make Jinnah India’s first prime minister: Dalai Lama

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Panaji | Tibetian spiritual leader Dalai Lama on Wednesday claimed that both India and Pakistan would have been a single country if former Prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru would not have been self-centred.

Speaking in response to a student’s question at an interaction held at the Goa Institute of Management in North Goa’s Sanquelim village Dalai Lama said,” Mahatma Gandhi wanted to give the prime ministership to (Mohammad Ali) Jinnah. But Nehru refused. He was self-centred. He said, ‘I wanted to be Prime Minister’. India and Pakistan would have been united (had Jinnah been made Prime Minister at the time). Pandit Nehru is very experienced. But mistakes do happen.”

The spiritual leader cited the example of Nehru to the students’ question where he was asked that how one can be sure-footed about one’s decisions and how to avoid committing mistakes in life.

Dalai Lama further spoke that “India has a culture deeply rooted in tradition and knowledge. The land of ahimsa is a cauldron of traditional knowledge includes the art of meditation, compassion, secularism and more.” Emphasing on the need to create dialogue and debate on a range of subjects which can aid aspiring B-school students to learn, analyse and gain new experiences Dalai Lama said,”We need more people to come together and talk and debate on aspects linked to India’s ancient knowledge such as ahimsa and compassion. We also need to find ways to reduce conflict amongst ourselves.”

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