Skip to main content

Surendra Mehta, A Champion of Vegetarianism and Compassionate Living

The International Vegetarian Union (IVU) remembers and pays heartfelt tribute to a champion of the vegetarian movement, Mr. Surendra Manilal Mehta. He passed away at the venerable age of 96 in 2019, but his extraordinary legacy continues to guide and inspire our global community.

surendra mehtaBorn on June 14, 1923, in Palanpur, Gujarat, Mr. Mehta left an indelible mark not only on his homeland but also on the global stage. He etched his name in the annals of IVU history in 1986, when he became the first non-European Deputy President of the IVU, demonstrating an enduring dedication to promoting vegetarian values and ethics.

In 1990, Mr. Mehta again blazed a trail by becoming the only President of the IVU from outside Europe or North America. His presidency, which he held for three consecutive terms until 1996, was marked by strong leadership and a fervent commitment to advancing vegetarianism worldwide.mehta

Beyond his substantial contributions as a leader within the IVU, Mr. Mehta was honored as a Fellow of the IVU, a lifetime honorary title bestowed for exceptional and extended service to our organization. He was among the esteemed individuals elected at the 34th World Vegetarian Congress in Toronto, a testament to his significant contributions and tireless commitment to our cause.

Mr. Mehta was a man who lived his values authentically and passionately. He embodied the ethos of ahimsa (non-violence), organic farming, and the study of Jainism. His devotion extended to the academic sphere as well, where he collaborated with the University of Madras to establish their Department of Jainology, furthering the reach and impact of these principles.

As we look back at his life, we are reminded of his unwavering integrity and deep-seated commitment to compassionate living. His legacy serves as a beacon that continues to guide us as we work to promote a compassionate and sustainable world. His dedication has left an indelible mark on the IVU and the global vegetarian movement.

Even though his passing occurred some years ago, the impact of Mr. Surendra Mehta’s life and work continues to resonate powerfully within our organization. His memory inspires us and guides our actions as we carry forward the values he held so dear.

In respectful remembrance,

The International Vegetarian Union.




  • Created on .

Download the Vegetarian Nutrition Booklet for Kids and Adolescents