Every year, as soon as it is October the 2nd, there is a bevy of articles on M. K. Gandhi. Be on social media or mainstream media everyone talks about him. And every year I have the exact same dilemma. Everything that is being said or written about Gandhi is self-contradictory; at least I find it that way. It does not matter which aspect of Gandhi’s life I pick, I find hypocrisy in abundance.
He was the pioneer of some of the phenomenon like Non-violence, Civil Disobedience, Satyagrah etc. These were the ways he used to fight against the British, but surprisingly whenever British were in trouble and needed help, he would gladly endorse violence. He would have no second thoughts about that, whatsoever. Be it world war one, two or any other regional rebellion, you will find him fighting along side the British.
He forced more than a million Indian soldiers to enter a war and die on behalf of the British in WWI and more than 2.5 million in WWII. Of course it is said that the soldiers volunteered to fight for their enemy and not against their enemy. Not only this he himself participated in 1906 Zulu Uprising (Bambatha Rebellion), and of course he was fighting along side the British crushing the Native Africans, who he would gladly call “Kaafirs“, “Raw”, “uncivilized animals” among other things.
As a matter of fact, Gandhi, who lived and studied in world’s one of the costliest cities i.e. London, who made a mockery of poverty in India by his superficial austerity measures, always thought of himself as a British first and an Indian second. At least till the time British beat the shit out of him and threw him out of a train as he was not good enough to sit in a first class coach reserved for civilized Brits only. Never the less, his loyalty for England never ceased.
Some of his noteworthy views:
“I knew the difference of status between an Indian and an Englishman,” he wrote later, “but I did not believe that we had been quite reduced to slavery. I felt then that it was more the fault of individual officials than of the British system, and that we could convert them by love. If we would improve our status through the help and cooperation of the British, it was our duty to win their help by standing by them in their hour of need.”
Any body who intended to take drastic steps to unearth British Raj from India found himself ostracized and Gandhi made sure of that. Be it Bhagat Singh or Subhash Chandra Bose. You can read history for yourself and find countless such people and incidences.
“I will die fasting, if you don’t _______“, you could fill in the blank. That’s emotional blackmailing and that’s what he used to do. The thing is, it works only and only on family members or the people who love you and care for you. It never works on your enemies. If your well being was affecting someone, he/she would not be treating you as a slave in the first place. Would he?
If you think this works on enemies, why didn’t he ever ask anything from Jinnah? or Pakistanis? Forget getting independence from a mighty empire like British Raj, if his non-violence means were any effective, why couldn’t he convince a tiny Muslim League to give away the idea of two nations? This act of partition caused more blood shed and manslaughter than any war India was ever involved in. Or did he want this? If he really believed in non-violence, why did he let India be a party to first India-Pak war for Kashmir in 1947? He could have stopped the massacre. Right? But he didn’t? Why? His last demand before he was murdered was him asking Hindu refugees to vacate Mosques in Delhi when they had fled from their home in Pakistan because of the religious persecution. He said the very same thing “I will die fasting, if you don’t____”.
In fact, if you look carefully, his theory of non-violence, civil disobedience to achieve any means whatsoever, falsify the sole existence of Sanatan Dharma. Lord Krishna did not get rid of Kans by non-violence, he could have done that, he was god, but instead he chose to fight. Pandavas fought a mighty war with Kauravas in Mahabharata, they did not use any of the methods preached by Gandhi, may be they were not as learned as Gandhi. Lord Ram with his Vanar sena did not go on a hunger strike to get Sita back, instead they waged a war and killed Ravan by using violent means.
Not only this, he had no gumption in condemning history’s towering warriors like Shivaji, Rana Pratap and Guru Gobind Singh as misguided patriots. So, in short, other than Gandhi, no body ever knew anything.
If you go by Gandhi’s ideology, you should not be willing to hang a murderer or a rapist, that’s violence. Isn’t it? Can law and order be established without the use of violence? Can a country protect its borders with armies sticking to the principles of non-violence? Would we remain free? For how long? Quite ironic! the same tenet that is worshiped as being the cause of India’s freedom will make us slaves of some country, in less then a day as soon as our armed forces announce that they will follow non-violence religiously. Think about it! Would we or would we not?
It’s a bogus theory and a propaganda that civil disobedience got us the freedom. It was actions like Bose’s Indian National Army, that caused a rebellion within the British Indian Army which constituted of Indians and lead to the freedom. After WWII, Britain was bankrupt and was not in a place to reinforce the Army by English Soldiers replacing Indians. If it were not for WWII, Gandhi’s policies would have not let India see its freedom at all. Moreover, India was not the only country that was decolonized after the second world war. There are dozens of other countries who got their freedom after 1945 from Imperial powers, they never had Gandhi’s unique and strange ideas. Please don’t say Gandhi transformed the British and they had a change of heart and that’s why they liberated other countries.
He played judge and jury by himself all the time.
It would be he and only he, who would decide when violence is good and when not.
It would be he and only he who would decide who stays in Congress who not. It was he who asked Bose to leave, it was he who asked Sardar Patel to step down. It did not matter what the other Congressmen wanted.
It would be he and only he who would decide when Racism is acceptable and when not. There are innumerable cases which bring his racist behavior against Africans to the forefront. A few years ago in Ghana a petition was filed to remove Gandhi’s statue because of his racist nature. And in fact the statue was removed. You could read about the petition here.
It would be he and only he who would decide when appeasement is good and when not. He was the one to bring appeasement to Indian politics by leading a pan-Islamist Khilafat movement to restore the Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate.
It would be he and only he who would decide which language is good and which not. In the beginning of his career in India, Gandhi gave a great impetus to Hindi but as he found that the Muslims did not like it, he became a champion of what is called Hindustani, something that wasn’t even a language; it had no grammar, no vocabulary. It was a mere dialect, it was spoken, but not written. It was a cross-breed between Hindi and Urdu.
It would be he and only he who would decide when development is good and when not. In 1909, while travelling from London to South Africa, Gandhi wrote in one sitting Hind Swaraj—a manifesto for self rule that was especially critical of Western civilization, modern education, international trade, and the role of the railways in enslaving populations.
It would be he and only he who would decide when it is acceptable to sleep with naked women other than your own wife and when not. He did not even leave his seventeen years old grand-niece. It would be he and only he who would decide when it is perversion and when not and when it is incest and when not. Of course some authors went a great deal in convincing their readers that Gandhi never made any physical relations with anyone other then Mrs. Gandhi. I believe it, I also believe that Salman Khan is a virgin, as he used to claim.
But I don’t understand how the people of India and specially the ones who follow Sanatana Dharma became such big believers. Sanatana Dharma was all about seekers and asking questions. Wasn’t it?
Sometimes, I do think, if Godse had not killed Gandhi, things would have been different. The moment those bullets ended up in “Hey Ram“, Gandhi became immortal. It does not matter how convincing Godse’s reasons were to him or to someone else, if only he would not have done it people would have looked at Gandhi with unbiased eyes like they do for all other leaders be it Pt. Nehru or Sardar Patel; if only he would not have shot Gandhi dead, people would have seen that the mountain of his blunders, that hid in the shadow of his monumental saint Mahatma image.
Of course, Congress would like to exploit the name Gandhi for obvious reasons, even BJP would not dare to question his decisions. They know Gandhi has been engraved deep in the subconscious minds of Indians from the very beginning, from their childhood-
Kids! now we will write an essay on the father of the nation.
Mahatma Gandhi or “bapu” was born on October 2nd, 1869 in Porbandar, Gujarat. Due to his untiring efforts India attained independence on August 15th, 1947. Mahatma Gandhi was a saint politician. Albert Einstein once said that Mahatma Gandhi was such a great human being that coming generations may not believe that such a man ever existed. … … …
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Defying Gandhi, is defying our own childhood; calling it all a lie. You can’t do it.
By the way titles like “Father of the Nation” are not official titles. They are illegal as per the Indian Constitution, Article 18(1) Abolition of Titles i.e. No title, not being a military or an academic distinction, will be conferred by the State.
Thanks for reading!!!