Future generations must know the path travelled by their ancestors, their sacrifices, hard work, and injustices, inflicted upon them and the exhibition space on Late Manilal Doctor will allow them to explore the footprints of their forefathers and to be better inspired to continue on the path of nation building.
This statement was made on Friday 28 July 2017 by the Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Jugnauth, during the launching of a permanent exhibition of the belongings of Late Manilal Maganlal Doctor at the Mahatma Gandhi Institute (MGI) in Moka. He stated that the exhibition will strive to connect the present and future generations while underlying the importance of transmitting our values, traditions and culture to the future generations.
Speaking about Late Manilal Doctor, Prime Minister Jugnauth recalled his dedication and commitment to fight for the rights of Indians against the colonial powers. He succeeded in giving our forefathers confidence to fight for their rights and not to subject to injustice and left behind a proud legacy and moral foundation for the Indian community to shape their future, he added.
In her address, the grand-daughter of Late Manilal Doctor, Ms Mona Doctor, emphasised on the contribution of Manilal Doctor in the political, social, historical and journalistic fields. She added that she is looking forward to deepening ties with Mauritius as regards the historical aspect.
The launching of the exhibition space was marked by the signing of an agreement between the Doctor family and the MGI. Ms Mona Doctor also donated some artefacts which belonged to Manilal Doctor to the MGI.
Manilal Maganlal Doctor, a pioneering barrister and crusader for Human Rights, was born on the 28 July 1881 in Baroda, Gujarat, India. He stands among the band of prominent personalities of India who denounced the atrocities suffered by the Indian Immigrants in the colonies of the British Empire.
Manilal Doctor struggled for the legitimate rights and justice of the working classes of Indian settlers in Mauritius and Fiji Islands. In October 1907 Manilal Doctor landed in British Colonial Mauritius. He came upon the request of young barrister Gandhi. During his short stay from October 1907 to September 1911 in Mauritius, Manilal Doctor played a crucial role in the struggle of indentured and unindentured labourers, and the Indo Mauritian planters for their social, political and economic rights.
The young Manilal Maganlal Doctor was a man of vision and action. He played a main role in the establishment and growth of the Arya Samaj movement in Mauritius. He founded the Young Men's Hindu Association with the purpose to bring unity among the Indian youth, and to help and serve the poor and downtrodden.
Through the publication of The Hindustani in English and Gujarati (later English and Hindi), which he founded in March 1909, he campaigned for an end to Indian immigration in the British Colonies, abolition of double cut system, the Corvee system, and the vagrancy laws in British Mauritius.