"India should come out with an ambitious target to cut down carbon emissions," he said addressing the 'Vibrant Gujarat Summit' at Mahatma Manadir here.

His call came after the recent announcement by China and the US to cut down carbon emissions and failed climate change talks among various countries during a UN summit in September last year.

"India is in a unique position to lead sustainability, energy efficiency and fight against climate change. India has a young population and it is a great opportunity," he said, referring to the greater role the country can play at the global level.

Ban, who is attending the Vibrant Gujarat Summit for the first time, started his speech in Gujarati while greeting the audience and said he was glad to be here.

This vibrant state is a gateway for the world to do business in India, he said.

"I wish India will play a full role in this mission for social security, health care and environment," he said.

"2015 is a historic and most important year for the humanity as it could be the time we end poverty, avoid worst impacts of climate change through sustainable development. This is the 70th year of foundation of the United Nations," he said.

"This is the year to achieve millennium development goals - access to energy, eradication of poverty. In December, Paris will hold conference to arrive at a universal and meaningful climate change agreement. In July, Addis Ababa will hold a conference to find solutions to fund development agenda of the world," he said.

"This will pave the way for inclusive growth and action against climate change. It will provide access to health care and education, find solutions to eradicate poverty, build huge infrastructure, and India will be playing a huge role in it," he said.

Ban made an appeal to the global business leaders that during bilateral talks at the Vibrant Gujarat Summit, more than business, they should be focus on sustainable development.

He appreciated Prime Minister Narendra Modi's initiatives to increase use of renewable energy sources (wind and solar) and to build new smart cities in the country.

"We should be able to provide universal access to energy to all seven billion people of the world. We should be able to double the energy efficiency and double the use of renewable energy in total source of energy. I am happy that Prime Minister Modi has already set the target for solar and wind energy for India and I also commend his initiative to build smart cities," he said.

On Mahatma Gandhi, the UN Secretary General said, "Leaders of the world will be inspired by vision and teachings of Gandhiji."

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