Issue 50 - Page 8
 

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Obituaries

 

Lord Weatherill at the presentation of Mahaveer Award to Swami Ramdev in 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lord Bernard Weatherill

Lord Bernard Weatherill, the former speaker of Parliament passed away on 6th May 2007. Lord Weatherill was MP for Croydon North East from 1964 to 1983. Lord Weatherill served in the Indian army during the Second World War - the famine in Bengal in 1942 greatly affected him and shaped his outlook to life. He became a vegetarian in India believing that meat consumption takes away grains from humans and that it was a diet which ravaged the planet and diverted food resources from human to animals. He said, ‘as a life long vegetarian I believe that since man cannot give life he has no moral right to take it away’. India also left a huge and lasting impression on him - he believed in the concept of Karma and reincarnation. He rose to the position of the speaker of Parliament from 1983 to 1992.

Lord Weatherill always attended our annual Christmas lunch and told me many times that the event sent such a positive message of the Indian community playing a positive role in Croydon. On 22nd July 1990 we organised our first Vegetarian Rally in Hyde Park and Lord Weatherill and Tony Benn attended - the event was covered in almost every paper the next day and millions of vegetarians in UK were pleasantly surprised to know that they had two famous politicians who were vegetarians. On 17th June 2001 we presented a ‘ Mahaveer Award’ to Lord Weatherill. He believed that it is crucial to keep a balance between material and spiritual values. He said that history reminds us that whenever that balance is overlooked disaster follows. It has been said that of the world’s recorded civilisations virtually all have died not from enemy action, but from spiritual decay.

 

Peter Roberts

Peter Roberts MBE, founder of Compassion in World Farming, passed away on 15th November 2006. Peter was a true pioneer and visionary who exposed the utter cruelty inflicted on farm animals. Peter successfully got the E.U. to recognise animals as sentient beings and not just ‘agricultural products’. CIWF continues to fight for the rights and welfare of animals not only in the UK but in many other countries too. Peter was a recipient of Mahaveer Award. We will always remember Peter with great pride and respect.

 

Michael Sutcliffe

Michael Sutcliffe, who was a well known animal rights activist, passed away on 6th April 2006 aged 83. Chairman of the Greek Animal Welfare fund for many years as well as chairman of Japanese Animal Welfare Society, he never failed to protest against vivisection, cruel farming practices, hunting with dogs and many other campaigns. Michael spoke at schools on behalf of Animal Aid and CIWF. Michael, along with Molga Salvaloggio, was a recipient of the Mahaveer Award. Michael was a vegan and the day before he passed away he had taken part in a central London protest against Canadian seal hunt. Michael's life should inspire all of us to do more for the cause of Ahimsa.

 

Narendrabhai Davadra

YIV lost a great friend and supporter in Narendrabhai Davadra who passed away on 28th December 2006. Narendrabhai accompanied me to YIV events all over the country and did all our IT work. He was a wonderful human being who enjoyed every minute of life and we miss him a lot. Narendrabhai liked food and we used to go to many restaurants to ensure that vegetarian standards in restaurants are not slipping! Narendrabhai was a wonderful human being who was generous both in mind and spirit.

 

Yashuben Amlani

Yashuben was a great supporter and guide of YIV for many years. She passed away on 7th April 2007. She was based in Bristol and organised many events to promote vegetarianism. She was an active social worker and received an MBE for her services to the community. She also wrote a Gujarati vegetarian recipe book which was very popular. We will remember her for the many campaigns we did together and for her advice and guidance.

 

Israel BerzIsrael and his wife were active members of the Croydon Vegetarian Society. It was Israel who introduced us to Sheila Barber, who runs the animal sanctuary we support. Sadly both Israel and his wife have passed away. We salute their compassion.