Monday, October 31, 2011

gandhi in his sixties dealing with dead locked problems of india

Gandhi in his sixties dealing with deadlocked problems of India.

Congress working committee to met  March 5 to endorse the Gandhi Irwin agreement , directing all congress committees to discontinue civil obedience. He Gandhi elaborated  upon each of provisions urging congress men  “ honorably and fully” to implement every cause. A day later Irwin wrote to thank Gandhi . Irwin wrote “ it has been great privilege to me to be given this opportunity of meeting and knowing you- that history may say you  and I were permitted to be instruments in doing some thing good for India and humanity.

On March 23, Gandhi tested the power and limits of his new friendship, in a letter to Irwin  Gandhi passionately appealed for commutation  of death sentences passed on Bhagat Singh and other two terrorists. Gandhi wrote warning that executions if carried out would  endanger peace. A general strike protesting the death of those martyrs was called by Nehru , Sub ash Bose whose hatred for British rule blazed on the eve of meeting congress held that  year in Karachi. Many young delegates at Karachi congress were apprehensive over Gandhi settlement  with Irwin  and told him so. “You decision may gone wrong “ Gandhi admitted.

On May 13, Gandhi went up to Sim-la to meet with new viceroy Lord Willing don, former governor of Bombay a more conservatively rigid imperialist than Irwin, whose Vice royal term ended in April. By late June of 1931 Gandhi prepared his entourage for round table trip, since his first visit to London since he had gone there from South Africa. Charlie Andrews managed the  mundane housing details of his from London  accepting Muriel Lester’s  offer to accommodate Gandhi in small entourage in her East End  welfare settlement, kingly hall. Gandhi confirmed for them “ I will be living same sort of people as those for whom I spent my life. He decided to bring along Mahadev Desai,  Pyarelal and his son Devdas to serve as his London secretariat. Neither of Vallabhai Patel nor Jawaharlal Nehru was invited though both had eager to join him.

It was raining when Gandhi reached London on September 12, 1931. The second round table conference had already begun and Gandhi addressed “ I am but poor humble agent acting on behalf of Indian national congress “ he told addressing the assembly of more than a hundred elegantly attired delegates, twenty three representing bejeweled princes of Indian states, sixty nine from British India , twenty representatives of Britain. Gandhi began with history  of congress which he represented he told them  all Indian interests and all classes. He stressed however its commitment to the dumb semi -starved  millions living in India 700,000 villages. Time was when I prided my self , British subject I would far rather be called a rebel than a subject.”

Next day Gandhi met with Ag Khan at his suite in Ritz but did not result in any breakthrough agreement leading to Hindu midlands, Gandhi  journeyed to Lancashire where he spoke un employed mill workers many whom blamed him and India’s boycott for hard times that had thrown them out of work. He pained the unemployment he saw there but he told them if they went to Indian villages they wound find starvation and living corpus's.   Today India is a curse he said explaining that was why he had taught Indians to spin “ work with which they are familiar, which they could do in their cottages. The employment British workers responded warmly to Gandhi’s unadorned simplicity and passion of his argument.

British repression had begun with vengeance before Gandhi reached Bombay  Jawaharlal Nehru was arrested on December 26 , 1931 and sentenced to two years of rigorous imprisonment.  When Gandhi disembarked in Bombay December 28, he learned from reporters of arrest of Nehru and from mainly congress leaders.

Gandhi never despaired behind bars. Adversely cheered his passionate nature and intensified his resolve. The 1932-33 prison interlude brought purifying rays of his inner light to focus on Hinduisms greatest injustice, the crime of untouchablity .  On March 1932 Gandhi wrote to new secretary of state, Sir Samuel Ho-are, to remind him of warning he had issued in the closing date of round table conference that “ I should resist  with my life the grant of separate electorate status, which would grant a bloc of separate seats on all new council to candidate born only in untouchable communities.

When Nehru in his own distant prison later learned Gandhi decision he felt  “” annoyed with him for choosing a side issue for his final sacrifice Jawaharlal Nehru was angry with Bapu  for taking religious ,sentimental approach to a political question “ and his frequent references to god- god had made him to do this- god even indicated the date of fast. What a terrible examples to set “ Nehru noted.

AS soon as Charlie Andrew learned of Gandhi resolve to fast unto death he wrote to try to  dissuade his friend. Gandhi considered his fast a unique opportunity “for self purification urging all his ashram family and other close to him to shed “shear of joy” rather than sorrow on his behalf. It is privilege. It is both privilege and duty he explained. In non-violence it is crowing act. If Hindu mass mind it is yet prepared to banish  untouchability root and branch, it must sacrifice me without the slightest hesitation. He told to press.

Congress Brahman from north and south India including eminent leaders as Sapru, Jayakar, Malaviya, Rajendra Prasad and Raja Gopalachary met Devdas and others the next day to hammer out the scheme that satisfied Ambedkar guaranteeing almost double the number of legislative assembly to his community than MacDonald offered the depressed classes. Meanwhile cable poured in from around the world wishing Indian great soul and “ Magician “  success and long life.

The Hindu leaders conference meet Bombay again on 25th September  and unanimously resolved “ hence forth  “ that no Hindu should be regarded hitherto should all have same rights as other Hindu to use public wells, public roads and other public institutions. The agreement was wired London , and MacDonald  accepted on behalf of British government. On 26th September Gandhi broke his fast drinking a glass of orange juice handed to him by Kasturba. Surrounded by 200 people Gandhi lay on his cot as Bengal  Noble Laureate Gurudev Tagore song poem from Gitanjali . Gandhi appealed to all Hindus letter and spirit follow every clause of settlement. 

That February Gandhi announced the first edition of his new weekly “ HARIJAN “ for which he asked Ambedkar to write some thing. “ the out cast is bye product of caste system” Dr. Ambedkar wrote . There will be out casts as long as there are castes. Nothing can emancipate the out casts except  destruction of caste system it self, in “ ugly growth “  of malign ate  un touch ability on its other wise health “body “

Gandhi on the day of fast Gandhi was released from prison, but British authorities fearing that his death in jail would ignite revolt. He was driven to his friend lady Premilla Thackersey’ s  bungalow near Yeravda  in Poona’ s cantonment. “I  cannot regard this release with any degree of pleasure “ Gandhi told reporters. He promised  the government not to abuse his release and appealed for un conditional discharge of all civil resisters indicating his hope for general amnesty and peace for cooperation. After five days fasting Gandhi took advice of Dr. Deshmukh  and began drinking bottled Vichy water to reduce acidity in stomach. Sarojani Naidu  and Dr. An-sari were there to celebrate with group that included many Harijans young and old.

At the end of July 1933, Gandhi wired home secretary to notify him of his intention to lead satyagraha march from Ahmadabad to Raj to urge all villagers there to boycott liquor and foreign cloth. Gandhi was immediately arrested at midnight August 1, 1933 first taken to Sabarmati jail and then transferred the next day to Poona Yeravda. When magistrate asked his occupation Gandhi replied “ I am by profession weaver and a farmer” . Asked about his residence  “ Yeravda jail now but Gandhi made brief statement “ I am lover of peace, and regard my self good citizen voluntarily tendering obedience to the laws of state which I may belong. But there are occasions in life time of citizen when it comes his painful duty to disobey laws - I have had recently spread of freedom and was in midst of people-living perpetual fear of loss of liberty and their possessions”  Gandhi said. However magistrate Israel sentenced him a year prison as a A grade prisoner “ considering your age and present state of your health. Gandhi was almost sixty four and weighed less than one hundred pounds. 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Gandhi -Bardoli protest and Satyagraha

Gandhi - Satyagraha and Bardoli tax resistance

For Gandhi the Bardoli  Satyagraha of 1928 provided a key idea. The Bardoli district or Taluka  consisted of approximately 137 villages, with total population about 88000 and area of 222 square miles. In 1927 Taluka received an increased 22 percent in tax assessment from government  Bombay revenue department. After several months of random protection and agitation the peasants began an organized  Satyagraha in February 1928 under direct leadership of Vallabhbhai Patel  acting under Gandhi authority. This tax resistance movement  limited to a protest against property tax increase that government had demanded. The protest was for tax officials report recommending 22 percent additional tax was unjust and inaccurate . Several weeks the government insisted adamantly that there was no need to reconsider the assessment. British Raj  appointed governor Sir  Leslie Wilson an independent committee of enquiry ultimately report favoring the peasants position. The incidence is sudden success and substantial blow to government authority and credibility.

The degree of non-cooperation obtained by Patel and Gandhi  in Bardoli  was an extra ordinary that it must rank as a text book example of success small scale Satyagraha. The effects of Satyagraha  were portrayed in most graphic terms under hard line  government machinery paralyzed in Bardoli ; revolt of the peasantry. The fame of Bardoli triumph over government spread  thought India and Sardar Patel  prestige soared with congress. Gandhi reaction to the impact of Bardoli is instructive. After four years (1924- 1928) relatively uneventful leadership, he found in Bardoli  key to his strategy for 1930 Satyagraha. At first he was notably cautious about wisdom of Bardoli comforting the government  on this issue and relied on Patel’s judgment but as the serious purpose and determination of peasantry became clear, Gandhi  thrilled at  the prospect of this combat with Dyer-ism.

“ Will people of Bardoli stand this last trial ?  Gandhi asked as climax of Satyagraha approached. “ they have already staggered Indian humanity. They have shown heroic patience in midst of great provocation.  Will they stand the greatest provocation that can be offered?  Shortly after this Gandhi toured Bardoli with Patel and returned convinced that rare demonstration of effectiveness of Satyagraha  was being staged . In early August Gandhi wrote the moment of settlement within government he wrote

Bardoli is a sign of the times. It has a lesson both for government and people for government  they will recognize the power of people when they have truth on their side and when they can form non-violent combination to indicate it. Non -violent energy properly stored up sets free force that becomes irritable. So far I have been able to see there is no doubt that settlement  has been wrong from unwilling government by pressure of public that was ever gathering force in geometrical progression.

The salt  Satyagraha

On March 12, 1930 Mohandas Gandhi at 60  years  age left his ashram at Sabarmati with his followers bound shores of Dandi  a small village on the coasts of Gujarat  in western India . Thus began most historic Dandi March  and Satyagraha one of  most dramatic events of India freedom struggle. The march covered over two hundred miles and lasted 24 days. Gandhi objective was to protest against tax imposed by British Raj had placed on salt under regulations of India salt act 1882. British Raj  enforced monopoly on collection or manufacture of salt  restricting its handling  to officially controlled salt depots and levying tax  on each mound.

Gandhi defied this monopoly and so broke  the law simply collecting natural salt from sea shore on April 6th . The Dandi march spread thought India others in India followed  his example.

Moreover the response of Bardoli taluka  encouraged  Gandhi to utilize this same area and population for salt march not only did he march through many of same villages that has been mobilized in 1928, but he also recruited heavily from this group. Finally he had been struck by British raj response to Bardoli the government had been over come by results of settlement and frightened by implication of Satyagraha . Gandhi fully appreciated the meaning of this and sought now to exploit it further on all India basis. In all these respects Bardoli was a key source of inspiration for what followed .

A young man writing from Bengal offered “ my humble services as Satyagraha  in coming struggle he precisely given his ideas behind campaign.  Your decision to launch civic obedience led me believe that you are trying once for all, to establish the supremacy and efficacy of non -violent methods over violent means. Politics in India today has been confused with an unholy mixture of non-violence and violence . I regard non-violence blesses him who yields it as well as him against whom it is wielded. In Bengal  there is school  of politics who believe in violence, but  terrorism is now exploded theory in west. If we could only establish the truth on our way in public mind with our own blood, we will have achieved our end. Gandhi perused his goal of freedom struggle  and Satyagraha  Gandhi was arrested on May 5th. The salt Satyagraha  continued  for all most  a year until direct negotiations between Gandhi and lord Edward Irwin viceroy ended. The Lahore congress which met in December 1929, affirmed Swaraj as India’s national goal and approved for conducting Satyagraha or civil disobedience for 1930. But congress left campaign to Gandhi responsibility

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

why was the Gandhi leader of masses in india?

Why Gandhi was the leader of masses in India

Gandhi success ed  in remarkably short period from 19 19 to 1922 informing a mass movement “ for real freedom or power , that was entirely unprecedented in India. His dramatic  political achievement at this time was transformation of Indian national congress into political organization with mass base. Gandhi said that highly educated men to carry out all stages of co-operation and his hope is more with masses. His faith in people is bound less. There is an amazing responsive nature. Gandhi requested let not leaders disrupt them.

Gandhi saw non-cooperation as way of involving whole spectrum of Indian society in political movement
. This worked through three dissent levels or tiers of followers : the western -educate elite, the  “ the power brokers”  or middle level political operators in law, business and agriculture and finally “ dumb million s “ as Gandhi call them or silent majority of people without property. Gandhi influence on this last group particularly the vast poor peasantry was substantial. By 1921 his message of Swaraj as personnel as well as social and political revolution had dug deeply into the popular consciousness.

Self purification along with social reform merged into the constructive program that congress promoted through its pervasive organization. Swaraj  was introspected as demanding charges in personal behavior that extended family planning and dies. Yet he  transformed himself as  people call him “ Mahatma “ . Charisma  came from Gandhi skill as communicator and especially his ability to use symbols and images in a languages for and Indian people. Like a poet, Gandhi treated his past with affection, drawing from Indian classics  old words - ahimsa , karma yoga, Ramraj , Tapsya- moksha and charging them with fresh meaning until they become symbols of both past and future. Gandhi drew from Hinduism  the core ideas that gave his taught continuity and coherence, yet he repeatedly reexamined that tradition  for purpose of social reform. Gandhi said his sacred wisdom is the  Bhaghawat Gita. The following are Gandhi opinion on Gita.

What, however , I have done is to put a new but natural and logical interpretation upon whole teachings of Gita and spirit of Hinduism. Gita itself an instance in point. It has giving new meaning to karma, sanyasa, yajna etc. it has breached new life into Hinduism . According to Gandhi view the Gita is an aphoristic work, it is a great religious poem. The deeper you drive into the rich meanings you get. It is being meant for the people at large, there is pleasing repetitions. With  every age the important of words will carry new and expanding meanings. Non of Gandhi terms were infused with rich traditional Indian symbolism than two key concepts of his thought, Swarajya and Satyagraha  and no one remained  more sensitive to their meaning. Gandhi liked word Swarajya  because it had traditional roots, and he seldom missed an opportunity to evoke the religion symbolism explicit in the idea of both Swarajya and satyagraha. 

It is some times assumed that since Gandhi for noble causes such as abolition of untouchablity and developed a world wide reputation as saint  he stood above criticism .

Thirty five years later, near the end of Gandhi long public carrier, Jawaharlal Nehru soon to become independent India’s first prime minister , reflected back turning point, of nationalist movement.  With un paralleled eloquence that deserves to be quoted as length, Nehru wrote what remains as perhaps the most moving assessment of what Gandhi achieved.

And then Gandhi came. He was like a powerful current of fresh air that made us stretch ourselves and take deep breath like beam of light that pierced the darkness and removed the scares from our eyes, like a whirlwind that upset many things but most of all the working peoples minds. He did not descend from top , he seemed to emerge from millions of India , speaking their language and incessantly drawing attention to them and their appalling condition. Get off the backs of these peasants and workers, he told us all you who live by their exploitation, get rid of the system that produces this poverty and misery. 

Political freedom took new shape then and acquired a new content. Much that he said we only partially accepted or some times did not accept at all. But all this was secondary. The essence Gandhi teaching was fearless and truth and action allied to these always keeping the welfare of masses in view. The greatest government for an individual nation or so we had been told in ancient books was abhaya , fearlessness, not merely body courage but the absence fear from our mind. But dominant impulse  in India under British rule was that of fear,  pervasive , oppressing , strangling fear of the army, the police, the wide spread  secret service, fear of official class, fear of laws meant for suppress, and of unemployment and starvation, which were always on there sold. It was against this all pervading fear that Gandhi quiet and determined voice was raised. Be not afraid.

The Gandhi had millions of people with him when he was fighting  with British for getting freedom to our country.  His contribution to our country is enormous and marvelous and   that is the reason he fondly called father of nation. He is one of great  world  leaders  among 19th century  leaders’.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Gandhi- Non Violence

Gandhi, the leader of non-violence was 45 and after 12 years in South Africa, he found that his brother passed away by the time he arrived in India by the ship Arabia. He reached Bombay on 19th Jan, 1915. Though unwell, Gokhale travelled from Poona to greet Gandhi. Earlier Gandhi had said that he will follow the foorsteps of Gokhale. On his visit, the biggest reception was attended by Bal Gangadhar Tilak and presided by Feroz Shah Mehta. The last reception was chaired by Barrister Mohammed Ali Jinnah.

Gandhi changed his dress to Indian traditional dhoti and long handed shirts. Everyone was astonished about Gandhi's new dress and his transformation. Gandhi travelled in third class train compartments. Gandhi went to Poona to talk to Gokhale who assured funds for any of Gandhi's organisations. The, Gandhi went to Kathiawar to meet friends and relatives. He also travelled to Calcutta to meet his sons and the Phoenix party in Shantiniketan. He also went to Rangoon to meet Jeevan Mehta who was a jeweller there. His long cloak proved handicap for third class travel and was discarded, footwear was given up for his brother. With a cheap Kashmiri cap replacing his turban, he travelled in dirty compartments.

An Ahmedabad based barrister Jeevan Desai offered his house in Kochrab. Gandhi named it Satyagraha Ashram. Those joining in it would pledge to non violence, Truth, Non-stealing, chastity, non-possession, bread labor, control of palette, fearlessness, respect to all religions,swadesh( Indian made goods) and abolition of untouchability.
            Suddenly, Gokhale died -  the influencial figure who believed in Gandhi, who offered a political and financial umbrella was no more. At a gathering of students, Gandhi said those wanting to terrorize should know that he will rise openly against them and would sacrifice his life for it.Gandhi understood the necessity of discovering a right place on battle fronts. Patient work would be needed to attract all regions. So Gandhi wanted to be cautious in his approach.

On I6th Feb 1916, he went to Madras and northwest Gujarat to towns in Sindh part of Bombay presidency at that time. People turned up in large numbers to visit him. He said that he thought the hearts of India were drawn towards his since he understood the troubles of Indians in South Africa. In him, they sensed a force, and thought he understood their plight and somehow had the power in the face of the British who were ruling the country. Gandhi’s commitment was also drawing attention.