Kiran Bali: A woman on a mission

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Kiran Bali, a graduate from OBV’s Parole Board Scheme is woman on a mission. Having become the youngest person to sit on the Kirklees Magistrates Bench, in 2007 she was recognised by the Queen who honoured her as Member of the British Empire (MBE). Most recently, her determination to serve her community has seen her appointment as the youngest person to chair the United Religions Initiative (URI) Global Council, at the tender age of 34.

The purpose of URI is to put an end to religiously motivated acts of hatred such as killing on the grounds of apostasy. They also promote interfaith cooperation, respect for diversity and envisions a world at peace. Bali, who is herself Hindu, grew up in the predominantly Christian town of Huddersfield. Her experiences as a child although not entirely positive, have been the fuel for a lifelong quest to deal with religious intolerance.

Bali alludes to this saying, “I felt a lot of tension between faith groups, even amongst children around the age of seven. I felt the need for better understanding and cooperation, due to the dynamics I experienced in junior school and in the wider community.”

Since then, Bali has tirelessly dedicated a lot of her time to religious activities in the pursuit of challenging prejudiced ideas. In 2005, she was the youngest Chair of the Huddersfield Interfaith Council and in 2008 she became ordained as an international interfaith minister.

Despite her young age, nothing has deterred Bali from achieving her goals. She has remained steadfast to her ideals, even spending time on few projects such as founding the South Asian Seniors Brotherhood, acting as a mentor to students, lecturing in schools, colleges and universities.

In addition to the experience she has already gained, Bali has all the credentials to lead URI successfully and promote inter-faith co-operation.

Well done Kiran, we wish you the best of luck.

Fortune Achonna

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