Remembering the Father

Little is known about Mahatma Gandhi, one of the greatest legends who helped India achieve independence. Thanks to a few pages in the history textbooks and the Bollywood super hit flick ‘Lage Raho Munnabhai’, many of us temporarily took a bit of interest in finding more about Gandhiji’s life.

On the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, let us get a litter closer to Bapu…

gandhi

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born to Putlibai and Karamchand Gandhi on October 2nd 1869 in Porbandar. Ever since his early childhood, Mohandas loved reading stories of Shravana and King Harishchandra. Following the principles of King Harishchandra helped him in the later part of his life and freedom struggle. Mohandas got married at an early age of 13 years to Kasturba, and the couple was blessed with four children later.

In the year 1888, Gandhiji went to London. He studied law at the University College London. During his time in London, he longed for his motherland and this longing made him take up the reading of ‘Bhagvad Gita’. After completing his studies in London, Gandhiji moved back to India in 1891. However, in spite of attempting a number of times, he failed to achieve any success in practicing the law in the court. In the year 1893, Gandhiji moved to South Africa to work for an Indian firm there. Though the initial contract was signed only for a year, Gandhiji continued to work in South Africa for 21 years. The   racial discriminations that he faced in South Africa changed him in many ways, thus awakening him about the social injustice that was present all over. After working for years for Indians and Black Africans in South Africa, Gandhiji permanently returned to India in 1915, thus commencing his freedom struggle. He then joined the Indian National Congress.

Gandhiji is remembered for influencing large masses of the nation during his struggle.

Khilafat Movement: Khilafat Movement was launched by the Muslims in the British India, appealing to the British Government to protect the Ottoman Empire. During this movement, Gandhiji succeeded in creating a strong Muslim base, which made him a major leader in the Indian National Congress.

Non Co-operation Movement: Gandhiji’s Non Co-operation Movement strongly promoted the ideology ‘non-violence weapons’ (truth and non-violence). However, this movement infuriated the British Empire and resulted into the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, where hundreds of innocent Indians lost their lives. This movement had several successes and failures, but it strongly instigated the need of freedom among every Indian.

Satyagraha: With an aim to oppose the decision of the British Empire of having no Indian in Constitutional Reform Commission, Gandhiji started the Satyagraha Movement. He then launched a new Satyagraha movement against the tax on salt in the year 1930. It was during this time that the famous ‘Dandi March’ took place.

Apart from these historical movements, Gandhiji hugely contributed towards the eradication of untouchability. He also played an important role in the Quit India movement as well.

In January, 1948, Nathuram Godse assassinated Gandhiji.

Even today, the Father of the nation is fondly remembered for his unconditional and unending contribution for the country’s Independence. October 2nd is one of the three national holidays of India. It is celebrated as the ‘Dry Day’ (no alcohol day). Martin Luther King, Jr., Barack Obama, Anna Hazare are some of the staunch disciples of Mahatma Gandhi. Internationally, the UN celebrates this day as the ‘International Day of Non Violence’.

 

                       

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