Dr Gaurav Sharma, who had been elected as a member of the New Zealand Parliament, took oath in Sanskrit on November 25. The 31-year-old old originally hails from Himachal Pradesh.
Sharma, who won the election as a Labour Party candidate from Hamilton West, first took oath in New Zealand's indigenous Maori language followed by Sanskrit.
"Dr Gaurav Sharma, one of the youngest, newly elected MP in NZ Parliament took oath today, first in NZ’s indigenous Maori language, followed by India’s classical language- Sanskrit, showing deep respect for cultural traditions of both India and New Zealand," India's High Commission to New Zealand Muktesh Pardeshi tweeted.
According to Sharma, who also tweeted about it, he had originally thought of taking the oath in Hindi.
"... But then there was the question of doing it in Pahari (my first language) or Punjabi. Hard to keep everyone happy. Sanskrit made sense as it pays homage to all the Indian languages (including the many I can’t speak)," Sharma tweeted in reply to a question asked by a Twitter user.
According to a report by The Tribune, Sharma had moved to New Zealand back in 1996.
"I am in politics for social service, as my family had gone through a lot of hardships. What really helped us was social security, which New Zealand did really well — not so much now, though," the MP told the newspaper.