The special relationship between South Africa and India was highlighted by an unprecedented lighting up of several Gandhian heritage sites in the colours of the Indian flag on the eve of the Independence Day.

“In compliance with a request from the Indian government, we approached the owners of some historic sites to do this and they welcomed it enthusiastically,” Consul General in Johannesburg Dr K J Srinivasa told PTI.

The three sites that attracted hundreds of onlookers overnight were Constitutional Hill and Satyagraha House in Johannesburg and the Pietermaritzburg Railway Station, where Gandhi started his path as a champion of anti-discrimination after being thrown off a train because he was in a compartment reserved for whites only.

Consul General in Durban Dr Shashank Vikram said the government authorities in Pietermaritzburg were just as excited about the project.

Constitutional Hill, home to the Constitutional Court, South Africa’s highest judiciary body, was built on the site of the Old Fort prison where Mahatma Gandhi was imprisoned during his tenure in Johannesburg at the turn of the last century.

India lights up heritage sites in South Africa