Post Mortem

gandhiji’s contribution on various social issues

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 10/1/2019 12:40:34 PM IST

 Introduction: Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi ‘Mahatma Gandhi’ was one of the great sons of Indian soil who rose to become a great soul and gave major contribution in the great Indian freedom struggle against the British rule in India. He was a man of ideologies and a man with great patience and courage. His non-violence movements involved peaceful protests and non-cooperation with the British rule. These movements had a long term effects on the Britishers and it also helped India to grab the eye balls of global leaders and attracted the attention on the international platforms.

Birth and Childhood: Mahatma Gandhi was born as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi on 02nd October, 1869 at Porbandar (which is in the current state of Gujarat). His father Karamchand Gandhi was working as the Chief Minister (diwan) of Porbandar at that time. His mother Putlibai was a very devotional and generous lady. Young Gandhi was a reflection of his mother and inherited high values, ethics and the feeling of sacrifice from her.

Marriage and Education: Mohandas was married to Kasturba Makanji at a very young age of 13. In 1888, they were blessed with a baby boy and after which he sailed to London for higher studies. In 1893, he went to South Africa to continue his practice of law where he faced strong racial discrimination by the Britishers. The major incident which completely changed the young Gandhi was when he was forcibly removed from the first class compartment of a train due to his race and color.

Civil Rights Movement in Africa: After the discrimination and embracement faced by Gandhi due to his race and color, he vowed to fight and challenge the racial discrimination of immigrants in South Africa. He formed Natal Indian Congress in 1894 and started fighting against racial discrimination. He fought for the civil rights of the immigrants in South Africa and spent around 21 years there.

Mahatma Gandhi in the Indian Freedom Struggle: Gandhi returned to India in 1915 and joined Indian National Congress and started to raise voice against the British rule in India and demanded the complete independence or ‘Purn Swaraj’ for India. He started many non-violent movements and protests against Britishers and was also imprisoned various times in his long quest of freedom. His campaigns were completely non-violent without the involvement of any force or weapons. His ideology of ‘ahimsa’ meaning not to injure anyone was highly appreciated and was also followed by many great personalities around the globe.

Why Gandhi was called Mahatma? ‘Mahatma’ is a Sanskrit word which means ‘great soul’. It is said that it was Rabindranth Tagore who first used ‘Mahatma’ for Gandhi. It was because of the great thoughts and ideologies of Gandhi which made people honour him by calling ‘Mahatma Gandhi’. The great feeling of sacrifice, love and help he showed throughout his life was a matter of great respect for each citizen of India. Mahatma Gandhi showed a lifelong compassion towards the people affected with leprosy. 

He used to nurse the wounds of people with leprosy and take proper care of them. In the times when people used to ignore and discriminate people with leprosy, the humanitarian compassion of Gandhi towards them made him a person with great feelings and a person with great soul justifying himself as Mahatma. Mahatma Gandhi’s contribution on various social issues could never be ignored. His campaign against untouchability during his imprisonment in the Yerwada Jail where he went on fast against the age old evil of untouchability in the society had highly helped the upliftment of the community in the modern era. Apart from this, he also advocated the importance of education, cleanliness, health and equality in the society. All these qualities made him a man with great soul and justify his journey from Gandhi to Mahatma.

What are Gandhi’s accomplishments? Mahatma Gandhi was a man with mission who not only fought for the country’s independence but also gave his valuable contribution in uprooting various evils of the society. The accomplishments of Mahatma Gandhi are summarized below:

Fought against Racial Discrimination in South Africa: The racial discrimination in South Africa  shocked Mahatma Gandhi and he vowed to fight against it. He challenged the law which denied the voting rights of the people not belonging to the European region. He continued to fight for the civil rights of the immigrants in South Africa and became a prominent face of a civil right activist.

Face of the Indian Freedom Struggle: Mahatma Gandhi was the liberal face of independence struggle. He challenged the British rule in India through his peaceful and non-violent protests. The Champaran Satyagrah, Civil Disobedience Movement, Salt March, Quit India Movement etc are just the few non-violent movements led by him which shook the foundation of the Britishers in India and grabbed the attention of the global audience to the Indian freedom struggle.

Uprooting the Evils of Society: Gandhi Ji also worked on uprooting various social evils in the society which prevailed at that time. He launched many campaigns to provide equal rights to the untouchables and improve their status in the society. He also worked on the women empowerment, education and opposed child marriage which had a long term effect on the Indian society. What was Gandhi famous for? Mahatma Gandhi was one of the great personalities of India. He was a man with simplicity and great ideologies. His non-violent way to fight a much powerful enemy without the use of a weapon or shedding a single drop of blood surprised the whole world. 

His patience, courage and disciplined life made him popular and attracted people from every corners of the world. He was the man who majorly contributed in the independence of India from the British rule. He devoted his whole life for the country and its people. He was the face of the Indian leadership on international platform. He was the man with ethics, values and discipline which inspires the young generation around the globe even in the modern era. Gandhi Ji was also famous for his strict discipline. He always professed the importance of self discipline in life. He believed that it helps to achieve bigger goals and the graces of ahimsa could only be achieved through hard discipline. These qualities of the great leader made him famous not only in India but also across the world and inspired global personalities like Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King.

Conclusion: Mahatma Gandhi helped India to fulfill her dream of achieving ‘Purna Swaraj’ or complete independence and gave the country a global recognition. Though he left this world on 30th January, 1948, but his ideologies and thoughts still prevail in the minds of his followers and act as a guiding light to lead their lives. He proved that everything is possible in the world if you have a strong will, courage and determination.

Rev. Fr. C. Joseph, Counsellor-St. Joseph’s College (Autonomous) Jakhama

 

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