Ambassador for world religious peace
Kamala Kanta Dash of the School of Political and Social Inquiry has been selected to the role of Ambassador of the Council for a Parliament of World's Religions(PWR), one of two representatives from Australia of a total of 16 global ambassadors.
Mr Dash, a PhD student in Public Policy and South Asian Studies, was selected by a PWR committee for his commitment to and work in promoting inter-religious dialogue. They noted his training in Hindu philosophy and practice, skills in policy analysis, his in-depth understanding of specific case study methods of learning, and his keen interest in youth issues as key factors in the selection process.
Mr Dash's work will involve reaching out to faith communities in India and Australia. This prestigious assignment tasks Mr Dash with a global responsibility to create, consolidate and enhance spaces for constructive dialogue among faith communities.
Mr Dash said he has many people to thank for his influences, especially his father, Goswami Anam Charan Dash, for inspiration and mother Manorama Dash for unconditional love.
"While growing up, my father always gave examples of Swami Vivekananda as an ideal saint and cited the legendary Chicago Address of 1893 as a key inspiration," Mr Dash said.
"At Monash my special thanks goes to Professor Marika Vicziany who inculcated a deep appreciation for multicultural and multi-faith dialogues. Associate Professor Pete Lentini has been kind and extremely supportive in all my community engagement activities and my mentors Dr Binoda Kumar Mishra from India and Dr Irfan Ahmad from Monash have extended continuous encouragement and inspiration."
Mr Dash joined the Melbourne PWR in 2009 as a Monash delegate and volunteer, where he was inspired by his exposure to the activities of the PWR team, delegates and speakers. In May 2013, Mr Dash took park in the Model Global Parliament where he represented the PWR and moved a motion to sign and adopt the Charter for Compassion.
Started in 1893 revived in 1988, the PWR is the pre-eminent global platforms for interfaith dialogues.