BIOGRAPHY OF MAHATMA GANDHI
AN APSOTLE OF PEACE
Early childhood and family background of Gandhiji
Educational background of Gandhiji
Fight for civil rights of Indians in south Africa
President of Indian National congress and several movements viz
- Satyagraha movement.
- Non-cooperation-Khilafat movement
- Civil Disobedience movement.
- Quit India movement
Principles of non – violence. truth and peace
A Great Leader And Social Reformer.
Ideals inspired many leaders and movements.
“An Eye for an Eye only ends up making the whole world blind” Mahatma Gandhi
In India the growth of modern nationalism is intimately connected to anti – colonial movement. Each class and group felt the effect of British colonialism differently. To unite all the groups, a new leader appeared in Indian politics with his noble idea of styagraha who was none other than Mohandas karamchan Gandhi, popularly known as ‘BAPU.” His emergence as the undisputed leader of Indian Freedom movement is an interesting story by itself.
Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born on 2nd October 1869 to a Hindu Baniya family in porbandar, Gujarat, on the western coast of India. His father, Karamchand Uttamchand Gandhi served as the dewan (chief minister) of porbandar state. His mother, putlibai’s religious and pious behaviuor left a deep impression on him. Gandhi ji received his early education and training from his parents. He grew up to be deeply religious honest and truthful. He always distanced himself from any form of vices. Gandhi ji was married to kasturba Gandhi in 1883.
He passed his matriculation examination in November 1887 from Ahmedabad. After that, he joined samaldas College in Bhavnagar state but withdrew immediately at the end of the first term and returned to Porbandar. For his higher studies, he enrolled at the Inner Temple London to study Law and jurisprudence with the intention of becoming a barrister. During his stay in London he tried to adopt English customs. After returning to India Gandhi tried to establish his career in law in Mumbai but did not succed.
At the age of twenty –four, Mahatma Gandhi flew to south Africa in connection to a lawsuit. He spent Twenty-one year at south Africa. He found that Indians and other dark skinned people faced discriminations and were the oppressed section of the society.
In response to the mistreatment meted out against Indians and others, he formed the Indian National congress to fight for the civil rights of the Indian community in South Africa. While fighting for the rights and privileges of Indians, he taught people to fight through non-violence and emerged as a great political leader there.
After staying for long in South Africa, Gandhiji returned to India in 1915. He became the president of Indian National Congress. He protested against the British rule. He started several movements for India’s Independence such as Non –cooperation Movement in 1920 civil Disobedience Movement(1930) Satyagraha Movement(1919) Quit India Movement(1942) etc.
After arriving in India Gandhi ji successfully organized satyagraha movements in various places viz Champaran(1916) kheda1971 and Ahmedabad (1918).These experiments of satyagraha movements brought Gandhiji into close touch with the masses, both the peasants in the Rural area and the workers in the urban areas.
The British passed the Rowlatt Act in 1919 to deal with the revolutionaries. This act gave unbrilled powers to the government to arrest and imprision suspects without trial for two years maximum.
Gandhi opposed the act and appealed the people to observe peaceful demonstration against the act on 6th April 1919. Gandhiji’s call for peaceful demonstration met with tremendous response. It led to mass demonstrations in Punjab and Delhi.
The jallianwala massacre 1919 was a sequel of this agitation. The Indian people were shocked by the way the British conducted the brutal mass killing. Gandhiji then launched a Non –cooperation (khilafat) movement in 1921 against the British rule.
The Muslims of India decided to force Britain to change their Turkish policy as after the first World War a harsh treaty was imposed on the ottoman empire and to the khalifa or spiritual head of the Islamic world. young Muslim leaders discussed with Gandhi ji about the possibility of a united mass action and Mahatma saw this is’ an opportunity of uniting Hindus and Mohammedans, as would not arise in a hundred years.
Thus the Non –cooperation (khilafat) Movement began in January 1921. Various social groups participated in this movement and the effects of his movement on economic front were tremendous. On 12th March 1930 Gandhi started his Civil Disobedience movement with his famous ‘Dandi March’ to break the salt law. Gandhiji projected salt a powerful symbol that could unite the nation as rich-poor Hindu-Muslim high-low caste everyone needs salt. On 6th April Gandhi ji reached Dandi and ceremonially violated the salt law manufacturing salt by boiling sea water. Many leaders and about 1 lakh people were arrested. Then followed the Gandhi –Irwin pact for the participation of the congress in the second round Table conference in 1931.
In 1939 with the outbreak of second World War India involved with war for being a constituent component of the British Empire. On 1942 the British Government sent a delegation to India under Stafford Cripps The purpose of the mission was to negotiate with the Indian National congress, a deal to obtain total cooperation during the war in return of distribution of power to an elected Indian legislature.
The talks failed as the proposal of limited ‘dominion-status’ was wholly unacceptable to Indian leaders. The failure of the Cripps Mission led to un precedent disappointment.
The congress Working committee met at Wardha, Maharashtra and passed a resolution demanding complete Independence from the British government. The British were asked to leave India Immediately.
The moving spirit behind the resolution was Gandhiji. The quite India Movement was the greatest challenge to the British empire. The sole purpose behind the launch of several movement such as Non –cooperation Movement satyagraha movement Civil Disobedience Movement Quite India Movement was to dethrone the Britishers from the ruling chair of India. Gandhi ji detested violence.
He followed the principles of non-violence Truth and peace throughout his life He proved that Ahimsa (non –violence) is stronger and more powerful than sword. Gandhi ji guidance and influences also empowered and encouraged women to be a part of the journey to freedom.
India’s freedom movement is also called as Gandhian era. Mahatma Gandhi ji is a well known personality around the globe. He was determined to make the end of the British imperialism and securing freedom for India.
Gandhiji was a great leader a saint and a great social reformer. He was pious truthful and religious. He believed in simple living and high thinking. He was a champion of democracy and was deadly opposed to dictatorial rule. Gandhi showed India and the world the path of truth and non- violence.
He believed that it was truth alone that prevailed in the end. According to him India’s real emancipation depended on swadeshi i.e.boycott of foreign goods, us of khadi, encouragement to village and cottage industries.
At last his noble efforts bore fruit and on 15thAugust 1947 India became free and independent. Gandhi defeated the mighty British empire not with swords or guns but by means of strange and utterly new weapons of truth and non-violence (ahimsa) Gandhj ji was assassinated at the Birla House (new Gandhi Smriti) in New Delhi on January 1948 Gandhi ji was outside on the steps where a prayer meeting was going to take place.
At same time Nathuram Godse emerged from the admiring crowd bowed to him and shoot him three times at point-blank range in the stomach and chest. Gandhi ji was taken back inside the Birla house where he died. He worked all through his life for Hindu-Muslim unity and the abolition of untouchability.
Gandhi worked hard for the upliftment of the Harijans the name given by him to the untouchables. Gandhi declared untouchability a sin against God and man Gandhi wrote his autobiography under the title ‘My experiments with truth’
His philosophy influenced important leaders and political movements throughout the world. Leaders like martin Luther king Jr Nelson Mandela aung san suu khi were deeply influenced by his ideas Indians widely describe him as the’ Father of the Nation’. Although his village –dominated economy was not accepted by modern India but his ideas of truth and non-violence made India’s political Identify as a tolerant and secular democracy.