Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis stresses fight against hunger and illiteracy during visit to Indian orphanage


Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis has prioritised the eradication of hunger and illiteracy during a visit to an aid project in India.

The dual approach was vital in tackling the problems of poverty in the country, he said.

”Ï prioritise two areas, which I call ‘read and feed’. ‘Read’ to help people to be literate, and ‘feed’ to help people to have food in their stomach. And the two are interrelated.”

He also emphasised the importance of mutual respect among people of different religions.

The Chief Rabbi was talking to hundreds of people who had turned out to meet him during a visit to a project helping orphaned children in the city of Kolkata, formerly known as Calcutta.

The project is run by the Economic Rural Development Society organisation which receives financial support from charities Tzedek and Calcutta Hope.

During a question-and-answer session with the children, Rabbi Mirvis said poverty could be overcome by better education and creating employment.

He praised Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s efforts to improve the country’s education system and boost the skills of Indian workers with his Make In India programme.

He added: ”There are 1.26 billion people in the country and poverty is widespread and we cannot wait because every day some hungry people have died in the country. Better education and better employment hopefully can eradicate poverty.”

Rabbi Mirvis is spending 10 days in India meeting the country’s Jewish community and viewing social action projects.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive