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18th International Conference of Chief Justices of the World
 
Why is a School organising International Conferences of
Chief Justices of the World
on Article 51 of the Constitution of India?
1
Page No. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8
Letter to UNO regarding Children’s Right to a Safe Future

4th November 2001

Dr Kofi A. Annan
The Secretary General
United Nations Organisations
New York - 10017 USA
Fax : 001-212-8887454 / 8887465

Sub: The world is in great peril. A World Government is needed immediately

Your Excellency,

On behalf of the 2 billion children of the world, born and yet-to-be-born, and on behalf of 25,000 students of City Montessori School, Lucknow (a School recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s largest school by pupils), I took the liberty of addressing to you a letter on 7 June 2001, requesting initiation of urgent action to include the ‘Right to a safe future’ in the UN’s Declaration on the Rights of the child (adopted by the General Assembly of the UN on 20 November 1989).

In my second letter dated 29 June 2001, while congratulating you on your unanimous re-election as Secretary General, I repeated the request of including the ‘RIGHT TO A SAFE FUTURE’ for world’s 2 billion children and for children yet to be born.

A reply dated 8 October on your behalf by your Department of Public Information tells us that during the first week of October the UN General Assembly held a debate on measures to combat international terrorism, which was attended by 167 Member States and four Observers. We are very happy to know that the Member States felt the urgency of having “an effective legal framework” for the prevention and elimination of terrorism. The letter also mentioned that the Assembly’s Legal Committee’s report is expected by 15 November.

We feel that in the prevailing unstable and unsafe conditions, the world can no longer wait for action to protect itself from all kinds of threats to its security and peace and that an effective world body has to be put in place with speed to save the lives of 6 billion people, of whom 2 billion are helpless children.

In our letter of 27 September we expressed our appreciation for the initiative you are taking in telling the UN General Assembly that only the UN can give ‘global legitimacy’ for actions directed against the enemies of world peace and security. You were very forceful that terrorism of the type witnessed on September 11 struck at everything that UN stands for: “Peace, freedom, tolerance, human rights, the very idea of a united family.”

Russia supported the ‘indispensability’ of a world body to maintain international peace and security and for mobilizing people of the world against new, unprecedented threats. Russian foreign minister Igor Ivanov advocated strengthening and enhancing the role of the UN.

What we are fervently appealing is to go a step ahead and beyond. As suggested by Jan Tinbergen, the 1969 Nobel Prize winner for Economics, ‘The mankind’s problems can no longer be solved by national governments, what is needed is the World Government and this can best be achieved by strengthening the United Nations.” We need to have a world government capable of restraining, controlling and bringing to subjection all erring groups or nations that operate against the interests of the world, its peace and security, and against ‘the very idea of a united family.’

The world needs to oppose terrorism of the type initiated by Osama and taken up by President Bush. Both of them are involved in killing innocent lives. In such a situation where does the world go? To whom do we look up to? Should we follow Osama or Bush? We need a wise and reliable alternative, a third force to contain terrorism and save the world. Your position as Secretary General is the natural choice. There is none else.

The Preamble to the CONVENTION ON THE RIGHTS OF THE CHILD states “the child… needs special safeguards and care… before as well as after birth.” The Philippines Supreme Court upholds the right of the born and the unborn to a balanced and healthful ecology.

The greatest threat to mankind’s future is the threat to children born and unborn. Two factors are the biggest enemies of mankind specially children; they are (i) unhealthy and unlivable ecological and environmental conditions; (ii) war and threat of war, endangering life and property and the entire civilization itself. The atmospheric pollution caused by the war in Afghanistan is releasing toxic gases endangering the already polluted atmosphere on account of the Greenhouse gases - carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, ozone and other gases which are having a destabilizing effect on the climate and the health of all, specially children.

The “rhythm and harmony of nature” are already in great peril. Injudicious exploitation of natural resources and failure in renewal and conservation of earth’s precious natural wealth have already put the world under great stress. The air we breathe, the food we eat and the water we drink are highly contaminated. We owe it to the 6 billion people, in particular to the 2 billion helpless children and generations waiting to be born, a clean and safe environment. We need a world body to put an immediate end to mindless destruction of the earth. Thus safeguarding our children’s future. You, as the Secretary General of the United Nations, owe it to the living and future generations an ecologically clean and safe environment.

The second aspect of threat to our survival is the thousands and thousands of nuclear warheads in possession of seven nations and the threat they pose. The world has no place to dispose of its nuclear waste. Threat to existing nuclear plants all over the world from terrorists is a reality. The world is still suffering from the evil effects of the Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe.

Chemical and bioterrorism has shaken up the entire world. With about 80 countries having chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction, the world is precariously perched on the edge of a precipice.

Survival in the midst of the two above mentioned burning issues is not possible unless there exists a world body, enjoying powers to control, restrain and eliminate all who are threatening mankind. A world government with a world parliament is thus not an option, but a necessity and an instrument of survival. After the September 11 catastrophe no one anywhere is safe. A solution has to be found, and found without any further delay. Article 51 of the Indian Constitution has the necessary depth and width to help solve the problems the world is facing. Sharing the ideals of this article with all the nations would enrich and benefit every nation and eventually pave the way to international peace and security. The article says: The State shall endeavour to: (a) Promote international peace and security (b) Maintain just and honourable relations between nations (c) Foster respect for international law and (d) Encourage settlement of international disputes by arbitration.

The UN as it exists today depends upon the goodwill of Member States to implement its decisions. It lacks enforceable power. You as the world’s first citizen, in your capacity as the Secretary General, command enormous influence to turn the tide of events to safeguard the peace and security of the world. At this moment, the greatest possible recognition that the world can give, has been conferred upon you and the UN - the Nobel Peace Prize in the first year of the new millennium.

The most opportune moment in history has arrived for you. You are in a do or die situation. You have to influence world opinion about the need of a world body to completely control all factors that affect world peace and security. Groups or nations posing a threat to world peace and security in any form have to be overcome, subjugated and eliminated by this world body. Failing which, the world is going to be miserably torn apart, and doomsday wouldn’t be far.

It is in this context that we appeal to you to initiate steps for a world government and world parliament. It is no exaggeration when I say that at the moment none other than you can effectively initiate steps for immediate action in this direction.

World leaders and people of the world are anxiously looking for a solution to this vexing problem. No individual, or nation is safe today. Military might has no permanent answer for world peace. War is a poor substitute for peace. As the custodian of humanity’s silent masses, as the spokesman of the helpless and hapless millions, as the protector of the weak and innocent children, the six billion people of the world look up to you to save them from the impending disaster.
Your matchless skill as diplomat and the credibility you wield, and may I say, the trust and faith that all Member States repose in you, make you an irreplaceable instrument and messenger of world peace and its security. The entire world is with you in this hour of peril and helplessness.

Hence please initiate immediate action for a world government. This is the cry of 25,000 children of CMS from Lucknow on behalf of the 2 billion children worldwide and the 6 billion people of the earth. We have no one else to turn to. I dread to think of the future if you turn down our request.

Wishing you every success in the heavy task awaiting you and with all good wishes and prayers, Yours sincerely,


(Jagdish Gandhi)
Manager

Copy of letter of Mr. Jagdish Gandhi sent to Mr. George W. Bush, President of U.S.A. sent before the U.N. Millennium Summit, 2005.

31st July 2005

His Excellency Mr George W Bush
President of United States of America
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
NW Washington
District of Columbia 20500
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (USA)

UN Millennium+5 Summit (14-16 September 2005)
(i) Request for support to strengthen and democratize the UN
(ii) Request for supporting children’s demand to include “Right to a Safe Future”
in the UN Declaration of Rights of the Child

Your Excellency,

  1. This refers to the forthcoming Millennium+5 Summit of Head of States and Government, being held at the UN Headquarters from 14th to 16th September 2005 to which your country has also been invited. As you would be aware, the agenda for the Summit includes reforming the UNO, as per the recommendations of Dr Kofi Annan, the UN Secretary General.
  2. Sixty years ago when the UNO was established, the founding countries were motivated by the noble desire to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war. The founding fathers of United Nations realized that unity is a prerequisite for peace and that there can be no world peace unless there is world unity. However, the framers of the UN Charter failed to devise a ‘common thread’ for binding member countries into one global family. In the absence of such a ‘common thread’ the UNO has become an organization of ‘Disunited Nations.’
  3. When the UNO was established sixty years ago, there was just one country with a few nuclear bombs, the USA. Today, the USA has about 12,070 nuclear warheads while Russia has 22,500; France has 500; China has 450; UK has 380; India has 65 and Pakistan has 25 nuclear bombs. Together these seven countries have nearly 36,000 nuclear warheads while about eighty countries are said to possess deadly chemical and biological weapons. No country has enough money to destroy these weapons of mass destruction because destroying these deadly weapons requires over twenty times the amount needed to build them. Countries that cannot feed nor educate their poor masses are spending millions and billions to buildup their nuclear arsenal. The killing power of the countries with veto power are causing fear and suspicion amongst other countries who, for their survival, seek similar killing powers by developing nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction. The present UN system has not been able to unite the world or to bring about world peace, hence we need to restructure the UN and establish a UN People’s Assembly or a World Parliament empowered to enact enforceable World Law, without which humanity will be doomed.
  4. In a historic judgement dated July 8th 1996, the International Court of Justice declared the use, or even the threat of use, of nuclear weapons—no matter what the circumstance—would be “contrary to the rules of international law applicable in armed conflict” (copy of news enclosed). Unfortunately, the decisions of the International Court of Justice have no legal enforceability and thus the world’s stockpile of nuclear weapons continues to grow, threatening the very survival of life on planet earth. This despite the fact that the International Court of Justice had charted a clear path toward nuclear abolition, in terms both of its legal analysis and its appeal to start taking Article VI of the NPT seriously.
  5. If we have to save humankind from the impending catastrophes of a nuclear holocaust or eco-disaster and from the vicious threat of international terrorism, humanity has to find a common thread for binding all the countries of the world into one global family. The time has come to unite the world in one thread of ‘Enforceable World Law’ because only universally applicable “Enforceable World Law” can regulate international behaviour and bind all countries together by the thread of law and prevent acts against humanity.
  6. In this regard we are enclosing copy of the summary of Secretary General’s report briefly outlining the decisions that all Heads of State and Government need to take at the above Millennium Summit and request your support for meaningful reforms that democratize and thus strengthen the UN. We humbly request you to kindly ensure that the Millennium Summit takes a positive decision on reforming the United Nations. As Dr Kofi Annan has been repeatedly emphasizing for the last two years, no meaningful reform of the UN is possible without reforming the Security Council. We therefore request your support for abolition of the highly discriminatory veto power system in the Security Council.
  7. We request you to take suitable decisions for empowering the General Assembly to enact Enforceable International Law that is equally applicable on all the countries and peoples of the world. Only such a Rule of Law can ensure a safe and secure future for the world’s two billion children and generations yet unborn.
  8. Dr. Kofi Annan’s emphasis on Rule of Law
    (i) Mr Kofi Annan, Secretary General of the United Nations, in his speech to the UN General Assembly on September 21, 2004, has laid special emphasis on rule of law. All important decisions, he said, must be taken in the framework of rule of law, at home and in the world.
    (ii) Yet today, he said the rule of law is at risk around the world. Again and again, we see fundamental laws shamelessly disregarded-those that respect for innocent life, for civilian, for the vulnerable-especially children.
    (iii) At the international level, all states-strong and weak, big and small-need a framework of fair rules, which each can be confident that others will obey. Fortunately, such a framework exists. From trade to terrorism, from the law of the sea to weapons of mass destruction, States have created an impressive body of norms and laws. However, he said “too often it is applied selectively, and enforced arbitrarily.”
    (iv) Rule of law as a mere concept is not enough. Laws must be put into practice and permeate the fabric of our lives. It is by applying the law that we can deny financial resources and safe havens to terrorists-an essential element in any strategy for defeating terrorism.
    (v) Each generation has its part to play in the age-old struggle to strengthen the rule of law for all which alone can guarantee freedom for all “Let our generation not be found wanting,” he said.
  9. We also request you to support the demand of our students for inclusion of a distinct and separate “Right to a Safe Future” in the “UN Declaration of Rights of the Child”. This would be a strong recognition of the right of world’s children to inherit a safe and healthy ecology and could serve as a basis for banning all weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear, chemical and biological, since these are a threat to ecology and thus violate the right of generations yet unborn to inherit a safe and healthy ecology.
  10. In this regard I would like to share with you a landmark judgement by the Supreme Court of Philippines in the case of Oposa Vs Factoran, which stated that children born as well as those not yet born have a right to inherit a safe and healthy ecology. The judgement further observed that it is the inter-generational responsibility of every generation to ensure that the succeeding generations inherit a safe and healthy ecology. No country, no matter how mighty and powerful, has the right to pollute the air we breathe and the water we drink. This crime becomes even more reprehensible when they pollute it for thousands of years with radioactive materials like depleted uranium, condemning generations to come. Since 1980s, US bombs and cruise missiles have been coated with depleted uranium also know as uranium dust, making them more deadly and devastating. These uranium-coated munitions are being used in Afghanistan and Iraq polluting the land, water and air and threatening the future of coming generations.
  11. Commenting in a letter to CMS on the above demand of CMS students, the Chief Justice of Philippines Hon’ble Mr Justice Hilario G. Davide, Jr - who had delivered the historic judgement in the celebrated case of Oposa Vs Factoran — wrote the following:
  12. “Undoubtedly and loudly, the present and future have spoken. They have charged us - our generation - with an accounting of what we hold in trust for them, their very future. One day they will change the world, the children of CMS proclaim. And we are taken by surprise that THAT day is TODAY. For today they are taking definite and potent steps to ensure that the realization of their right to a safe future starts this very moment, NOW. The children of CMS hold the frontline in this clamor, through their petition to the United Nations for inclusion in the UN Convention on the Rights of The Child, a separate and distinct Right to a Safe Future.” (See attached copy of extracts from letters of eminent persons supporting CMS children’s demand for including a separate Rights to a Safe Future in the UN Declaration of Rights of the Child).
  13. We also take this opportunity to bring to your kind attention that the City Montessori School (see www.cmseducation.org) is recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as world’s largest school by pupils with over 29,000 students on roll; it is also world’s only school to receive the UNESCO Prize for Peace Education (2002) and also the only school to receive the Nuclear-Free Future Special Achievement Award (2004). CMS also organizes annual International Conference of Chief Justices of the World every December with the objective of bringing about a more just and democratic world order. These Conferences have drawn widespread support from the world judiciary and the political leaders.
  14. As the Founder of CMS and the Convenor of the International Conference of Chief Justices of the World, the undersigned had been invited by he United Nations Non-Governmental Liaison Service (NGLS) as active participant in the Hearings of the General Assembly’s Special Task Force for consultations with NGOs, Civil Society and Private Sector on reforming the United Nations held on 23rd and 24th June 2005 at the UN Headquarters in New York. At these Hearings, nearly all the speakers supported reform of United Nations and the undersigned presented the following three demands (copy of full presentation enclosed for your kind perusal and ready reference):
    (i) abolish the veto power system in the Security Council.
    (ii) empower the UN General Assembly to enact Enforceable International Law equally applicable on all and
    (iii) include a distinct and separate “Rights to a Safe Future” in the UN Declaration of Rights of the Child.
  15. We also humbly request you to please include the above issues in your speech that you will deliver at the UN Millennium+5 Summit in September 2005 and to please also forward a copy of your speech to us.
  16. Your precious support to the above issues shall help usher in a New World Order that is more just, democratic and equitable.
  17. The CMS students have long been demanding the inclusion of a distinct and separate “Right to a Safe Future” in the UN Declaration of Rights of the Child. This demand has drawn widespread support from eminent jurists and world leaders (copy of extracts from some letters of support are being enclosed herewith for your kind perusal and information.)
  18. We seek your support to children’s demand to include a distinct and separate “Right to a Safe Future” in the UN Declaration of Rights of the Child. All messages of support shall be forwarded to the UN Secretary General so that the Declaration may be formally amended and the inclusion of this Right be brought into effect.

We eagerly look forward to your favourable response.

With highest regards,



(Jagdish Gandhi)
Founder-Manager, CMS & Convener of the
International Conferences of the Chief Justices of the World

Enclosed:
(i) Summary of UN Secretary General’s report for decision by Heads of State and Government.
(ii) Copy of presentation of Mr Jagdish Gandhi at the UN General Assembly Hearings.
(iii) Copy of news of International Court of Justice’s judgement declaring nuclear weapons illegal.
(iv) Extracts from some of the speeches and letters from World Leaders and Chief Justices and Eminent Personalities showing global support for the crusade launched by City Montessori School (CMS) for binding all the countries of the world in Enforceable International Law for safeguarding the future of world’s two billion children and generations yet-to-be-born from the impending threat of nuclear disaster, international terrorism and ecological devastation.

 
Click to enlarge view
Group photograph of the participants at the 7th International Conference of Chief Justices held in December 2006.
 
PLIGHT OF CHILDREN - A CALL FOR SUPPORT
Children are the common denominator. For parents their child is the most precious possession in the world. No parent can ever bear the thought of any harm coming to their child. Yet, the UN data about the world’s children show many staggering facts:
40,000 children under the age of five die each day from malnutrition and preventable diseases.
Each year, at least 250,000 young children lose their sight for lack of a small amount of vitamin A in their diet.
In the past ten years, 2 million children died in war, between four and 5 million are handicapped, 12 million have become homeless and one million have lost their parents or are separated from them. Over 300,000 children have been exploited as soldiers, bearers and mine-workers. Twenty-five million children hd closed refugee camps, encircled by gun towers and barbed wire.
Approximately 150 million children spend their days on the streets. Of them, 60 million are street children whose only home is the street. The youngest street children are only 5 or 6 years old.
Nearly 100 million children of the primary school age are not taking part in any education programmes.
113 million children never even begin school.
 
Imagine the plight of these children! What can be done? By whom?
The security of the world’s two billion children and generations yet-to-be-born is threatened by ecological disaster, international terrorism and nuclear war. These are truly global threats and no one, in any corner of the world, is safe or secure from these threats.
The politicians of the world are busy with national affairs and not with the needs and affairs of this age which are international by nature. Who is going to safeguard the future of the world’s 2 billion children?
We at CMS believe that education must concern itself with the affairs of this age. This is why the children of CMS, the world’s largest school, feel that it is their responsibility to raise this issue.
It is time for all of us to be conscious of these threats and also to unite as one and come together to safeguard our children’s right to a secure and safe world and a healthy ecology.
On behalf of the world’s two billion children and generations yet-un-born, the City Montessori School (CMS) invites all to unite and demonstrate their support for the CMS students’ call to the world judiciary —the last hope of humanity’s survival— and to help create a world safe for children.
 
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