Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji, president of Parmarth Niketan, one of India’s largest interfaith spiritual institutions, was recently awarded the special Ahimsa award by the Parliament of World Religions in Toronto.

Dr Robert P Sellers, chair of Parliament of World Religions, Dr Kirit Daftary, trustee and representative of the Jain religion, Parliament of World Religions, honoured HH Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji for his contributions to strengthen the interfaith community through non-violence, his service to humanity, his great example of peace and compassion in action.

Sadhvi Bhagawatiji, president of Divine Shakti Foundation and secretary-general of Global Interfaith WASH Alliance, called Pujya Swamiji an embodiment of Ahimsa and said: “Ahimsa is not simply an absence of violence. It is a fullness of peace, a fullness of embracing and acting from the truth of our highest united humanity.

“Pujya Swamiji sees not only bombs, guns and armed conflict as violence. He also sees starving children, homeless orphans, women without access to clean water or toilets, death by diarrhea, polluted rivers and felled trees as violence.”

HH Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji is also the co-founder of Global Interfaith WASH Alliance; founder of  Ganga Action Parivar, Divine Shakti Foundation and India Heritage Research Foundation.