The world changed – for the worse – after it witnessed nuclear bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan during the World War II.
72 years later, the situation isn’t any better. With more than 15,000 nuclear weapons in the world, the human race is at an alarming risk of extinction even if a few of them were to be ever launched.
These weapons, if not launched by intent, are at a risk of being launched by accident or miscalculation. To raise awareness and teach citizens about this imminent danger at hand, Global Zero India organized ‘Teach–Ins’ in Delhi and Bangalore on the 72nd anniversary of Hiroshima bombing on 6th August, 2017.
These ‘Teach-Ins’ started with a short introduction by Vibhana Kanwar, a Grassroots Team Leader with Global Zero, about the kind of threat and dangers a nuclear war across Indian and Pakistani borders can bring to the table.
Since India and Pakistan are two nuclear-armed countries sharing the same border, the threat of a nuclear war is a very likely possibility. Dr. Reshmi Kazi pointed out later that if Pakistan were to declare a ‘No First Use’ policy, then India, China, and Pakistan could this way form a club – hence, taking the first step towards disarmament.
The day witnessed the presence of many keen Indian activists and participants attending the event, from making origami cranes denoting peace to paying homage to Sadako Sasaki, a victim of the atomic bombings in Japan.
According to Rashi Jauhri, the South Asian Field Organiser with Global Zero, “The existence of nuclear weapons poses an existential threat not only to India and Pakistan but to human civilisation as we know it.”
The participants engaged in public dialogue about the growing risks of nuclear weapons usage, the catastrophic humanitarian and environmental consequences of such use, and the ethical importance of the elimination of these weapons of mass destruction.
At the end of the three-hour event, the participants tweeted the pictures of their handmade origami cranes to PM Modi, using the hashtag #NoNukes.
The origami cranes along with a rakhi were then delivered to the Prime Minister’s office on the 8th August by Rashi Jauhri and Vibhana Kanwar to commemorate Sadako’s life.
“On the occasion of Rakshabandhan and the tragic anniversary of the atomic bombings, we’re asking the Prime Minister to do everything in his power to ensure that nuclear weapons are never used again. The only way to do that is to eliminate them once and for all,” said Jauhri.
Global Zero is the international movement for the elimination of nuclear weapons. It is led by more than 300 eminent world leaders and backed by half a million citizens worldwide. For more information, please visit www.globalzero.org.
Image Credits: Raghav Juneja and Sahil Chauhan for DU Beat