Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the death of South Africa's Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu on Sunday. One of South Africa's most prominent anti-apartheid activists and a Nobel Peace Prize awardee, Archbishop Desmond Tutu passed away at the age of 90 on December 26.
Taking to Twitter, PM Modi wrote, "Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu was a guiding light for countless people globally. His emphasis on human dignity and equality will be forever remembered. I am deeply saddened by his demise, and extend my heartfelt condolences to all his admirers. May his soul rest in peace."
In the late 1990s, Desmond Tutu was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He was hospitalised multiple times in recent years for infections connected to his cancer treatment. Desmond Tutu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 for his nonviolent resistance to apartheid. He saw the regime come to an end a decade later, and he also chaired a Truth and Reconciliation Commission tasked with uncovering atrocities committed during those dark days.
Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu was a guiding light for countless people globally. His emphasis on human dignity and equality will be forever remembered. I am deeply saddened by his demise, and extend my heartfelt condolences to all his admirers. May his soul rest in peace.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 26, 2021
As the first black bishop of Johannesburg and then Archbishop of Cape Town, the buoyant, blunt-spoken clergyman used his pulpit, as well as regular public rallies, to mobilise public opinion against racial inequity both at home and abroad. Tutu celebrated South Africa's multi-racial society after the end of apartheid and the country's first democratic elections in 1994, calling it a "rainbow nation" -- a phrase that encapsulated the country's heady optimism at the time.
"Tutu’s demise is another chapter of bereavement in our nation’s farewell to a generation of outstanding South Africans who have bequeathed us a liberated South Africa,” South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said in a statement.