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International Day for Tolerance 2019: History, Celebrations and Facts

International Day for Tolerance is observed on 16 November annually to raise awareness about the importance of tolerance in society and to make people understand the negative effects of intolerance in our lives. Let us have a look in detail about the International Day for Tolerance.
Nov 15, 2019 13:35 IST
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International Day for Tolerance
International Day for Tolerance

Tolerance is an attribute that helps people to live together peacefully. Tolerant people accept the opinions of other people and listen to them. They show strength that they can deal with different opinions and perspectives.

On International Day for Tolerance, various activities are organised that target both educational institutions and the general public.

Even according to UNESCO's 1995 Declaration of Principles on Tolerance "Tolerance is respect, acceptance, and appreciation of the rich diversity of our world's cultures, our forms of expression and ways of being human".

International Day for Tolerance: History

The UN General Assembly in 1996 by the resolution 51/95 invited UN Member States to observe the International Day for Tolerance on 16 November. Various activities were organised that are directed towards both educational establishments and the public on a larger scale. Let us tell you that, it is the initiative of UNESCO in 1993 UN General Assembly to be followed up on the United Nations Year for Tolerance, 1995 proclamation. The UNESCO member states adopted the Declaration of Principles on Tolerance and Follow-up Plan of Action for the Year on 16 November, 1995.

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The World Summit that was held in 2005 also documented the outlines of the commitment of the Head of the State and Government to focus on human welfare, freedom, and progress everywhere. Further, to encourage, tolerance, respect, dialogue and cooperation among different cultures, civilisations, and peoples.

About UNESCO-Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence

UNESCO developed a prize in 1995, to commemorate the 125th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and to mark the UN International Day for Tolerance to promote tolerance and non-violence. The Prize named UNESCO’s-Madanjeet Singh Prize. It is awarded for the significant activities in the scientific, artistic, cultural or communication fields. Not only this, but it can also be awarded to institutions, organisations or persons who have contributed to tolerance and non-violence in an effective manner. The Prize is awarded every two years on 16 November on International Day for Tolerance. With the award ceremony, the winner is presented with the sum of US$ 100,000.

Importance of Tolerance

Tolerance is one such quality that is considered as the bedrock of society. Due to globalisation, people of different backgrounds, cultures, and faith live together. Therefore, to establish tolerance and harmony is an important factor. Tolerance generates a society in which people feel valued and respected. Every person has their own room with their own ideas, beliefs, thoughts, and dreams. No doubt for a healthy and liveable society, tolerance is an essential aspect. One should respect other culture, caste, colour or creed. On the other hand, we can't ignore the fact that tolerance does not means that only one person or party shows patience and acceptance for others, whereas the others do not. Therefore, tolerance should be shown on both sides. Tolerance helps in personal development by opening yourself to listen to others and their ways of thinking.

Note: To respect and tolerant behaviour does not necessarily mean that you should compromise your principles or unwillingly accept other's ideas. We have to keep in mind that it is a fundamental human right.

Therefore, International Day for Tolerance celebration on 16 November focuses on tolerance behaviour and non-violence for the betterment of society.

Important Days and Dates in November 2019

Important Days in 2019: National and International