Gandhi: His Life and Message for the World (1954) Assignment

Gandhi: His Life and Message for the World (1954) Assignment Words: 2215

A private citizen without health died on January 30, 1948. Mohandas K. Gandhi fell after being shot three times at the age of seventy-eight. Many people looked up to Gandhi. To pay respect, humanity followed by the UN lowered their flags to half-mast. Almost a million people waited near Jumna, not far from New Delhi, for the funeral to proceed. Not far from the river was a pyre built of stone, brick, and earth. Gandhi’s body will lie upon this pyre; having his head to the north, representing when a Buddha has ended his life.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born in Porbandar, India on October 2, 1869. His parents’ names were Karamchand and Putlibai. Gandhi’s father owned a home in Rajkot, Porbandar, and Kutiana. Karamchand wore a gold necklace, while one of his sons wore a solid-gold armlet. As Gandhi grew older, he became more social and played in the streets with his friends. At the age of twelve, Gandhi would steal from his family to secretly buy cigarettes. Him and a relative came close to suicide. However, courage saved them. At the age of 13, Gandhi married through his parents to Kasturbai who was also 13.

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They did not get along at first; they continuously would not talk for days. In 1985, Gandhi’s father passed away from a serious illness. He barely left them anything. Gandhi’s eldest brother saved him when he took Gandhi and his wife to Bombay where he will sail to England. In 1888, Gandhi and Kasturbai had their first child named Harilal. Shortly after the birth of his son, Gandhi sailed away to England for law school on September 4, 1888. A dark hair Gandhi was photographed as soon as he landed in England. He is known for his big nose and large ears. The life in England was very foreign for Gandhi.

He was later admitted to London University to study French, Latin, physics, and chemistry. On June 12, 1891, Gandhi sailed back to Bombay. He started to write a daily magazine called Young India. He mentions how his life did not start until after college. However, he left an impact during his two-year stay in England. On October 28, 1892 Gandhi’s third son was born, Manilal. When Gandhi returned to India he found out bad news. His mother had passed away. A firm in Porbandar offered to send Gandhi to South Africa for a lawyer. He was supposed to stay there for one year.

Shortly after he arrived in South Africa, he experiences an impact that would last in his life forever. At Maritzburg, Gandhi is asked to leave his first class seat and to move to the baggage car. After he refused, the policemen removed Gandhi off the train. Not only did Gandhi stay in South Africa a year, but also he stayed there for 21 years. During the 21 years he became a successful lawyer and leader. He recognized that the whites in South Africa needed protection from the Negro’s and Indians. Just a year after Gandhi has been there a law passed for explicitly disfranchising Asiatic.

In 1896, Gandhi returns to India to bring his wife and two sons back to South Africa with him. Soon after Gandhi and his family arrive in India, comes a second boat filled with 800 Indians. Immediately the hostile crowd blames Gandhi. Eggs, bricks, and rocks were thrown at him. Gandhi was getting severely beaten until Mrs. Alexander came to the rescue. Two years later, Gandhi volunteers to help raise corps for the British side in the Boer War. Gandhi was earning five to six thousand pounds annually. With some of the money he bought a house on the beach in Durban. His third son, Ramdas was born in Africa in 1897.

Then shortly after Ramdas came Devadas, who was born on May 22, 1900. An Indian community in South Africa gave gifts to Gandhi and his family starting in 1896. The gifts were used to help the Indians in South Africa by making a trust fund. On July 31, 1907 The Asiatic Registration Act passed. He was sentenced to prison for two months after the law passed. Him and other Indians were soon released after agreeing to register voluntarily. At the meeting a giant Pathan shouted he would kill whoever were to register first. Gandhi immediately said he will be the first knowing death would come from a brother.

He was to die on January 30, 1948. Pathans and Mir Alam were arrested for their threats toward Gandhi. Yet, Gandhi released them saying, “I have no desire to prosecute them”. In 1909, Gandhi sailed back to England for business. It turned out very good for Gandhi in England. He won support of many of the people. When Gandhi returned to South Africa at the end of 1909 he started to create a “a sort of co-operate commonwealth”. This is where citizens would be trained to live a normal life in harmony with one another. On November 6, 1913 thousands of people marched with Gandhi twenty-one miles nto Transvaal. Gandhi was arrested by the end of the first day. Yet, he was released due to the fact he was responsible for the other marchers. He was again arrested the second night and then later released after court. The fourth day he was arrested with Polak and Kallenbach. The three of them were held there until December 18, 1913. PART II: Not only was Gandhi a huge impact in the twentieth century, but so was Tagore. They worked very well together. In February 1916, Gandhi spoke out to the students at the opening of the Hindu University Central College in Benares.

Satyagraha Ashram was first located in Krochrab, then in Sabarmati. In 1914, Gandhi raised a group of Indian students to serve in the British Army. Four years later, Gandhi recruited for the British Army in his area. Gandhi stayed in Champaran for seven months. While he was there he brought in a doctor and teacher. Kasturbai came along to teach the women the steps of cleaning. Before he left he organized a committee of prominent Bihar lawyers. On April 13th around one o’clock a tragedy occurred. 1,650 shots were fired toward a crowd. Within those shots 379 people were killed leaving 1,137 wounded.

This tragedy is called the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre. In December 1921 and January 1922, about ten thousand Indians were put into prison. To satisfy his people, Gandhi organized a civil disobedience campaign. On February 1, 1922 he told Lord Reading his plan. A mob came and murdered 22 policemen on February 8th. At 10:30pm, Gandhi was arrested on March 10th. He was sentenced to prison for six years. After being in jail for almost three months, Gandhi was released after having his appendix removed. Gandhi and other leaders urged a two-year warning for independence following a war.

Soon after he forwarded it to one year. After a year had passed, Gandhi and his team walked 24 days to the sea. When they reached the sea on April 5th, Gandhi dipped in the water while retrieving salt left from the waves. Taking salt was a British law Gandhi had broken. The police began to arrest many people for taking salt after Gandhi did. On May 4th, Gandhi was arrested a few miles from the incident. On January 25, 1931 Gandhi was released after Macdonald realized everyone on the committee was in jail. Soon after Gandhi and Lord Irwin had many meetings came, “The Delhi Pact”.

In this pact the civil obedience would stop, prisoners will be released, and salt manufacture would be permitted on the seacoast of India. Independence and Dominion status were still not promised. To Gandhi this was a big step that would hopefully continue into better things. Gandhi spent most of his life in prison. He stayed in prison for 2,089 days in India and 249 days in South Africa. When he was in India he went through a 6 day “Epic Fast”. He nearly came to his death until the British government accepted the Yeravda Pact. The Hindus were wishing that he must not die.

When Gandhi was arrested August 9, 1942, violence went up in the towns. Many of Gandhi’s people set police and government buildings on fire. On February 22, 1944, Kasturbai died. Following her death, Gandhi had a memorial service on the 22nd of every month. May 6, 1944, Gandhi and his fellow Indian leaders were released from prison for the last time. Once he got out of jail things began to fall into place. Germany surrendered on July 26, 1945. Shortly after Germany surrendered came Japan on August 14, 1945. The government announced an early realization of self-government in India.

PART III: Gandhi appears to be healthier then ever. He still continues to take his walks 5:30am every morning. He was quick in his movements and exercised on the regular. For the settling of India, the cabinet missionary came to India on March 23, 1946. The western half of Pakistan would be 37% non-Moslem. This leaves 48% Moslem in the eastern part of Pakistan. The Cabinet advised Britain not to divide Pakistan for many reasons. On June 4th, Jinnah accepted to the Missions plan. Almost a year later, chaos occurred leading Jinnah to cancel his acceptance of the plan.

Gandhi had a routine in his life from November 7, 1946 to March 2, 1947. He would wake up at four o’clock every morning to walk three or four miles. He would arrive in a village and stay there for days talking and praying with habitants. He accomplished to settle in 49 villages at the age of 77. A new assignment was addressed on October 6, 1948. Lord Mountbatten’s assignment was to remove Britain government from India by June of 1948. Gandhi believes Britain cannot leave India without a government. On August 15, 1947, India achieved her independence.

However, Gandhi could not participate in the celebrations. Later on in August, a mob of Hindu’s broke into his home carrying a dead Hindu stabbed by Moslems. Not even Gandhi could tame them. Gandhi felt as if everything was coming to an end. He believed he had failed, but would not give up on his people. Because of the violence occurring, Gandhi started to fast at 8:15pm. During his fast, many people would come to him begging for him to stop. Christians, Hindus, and Moslems were coming to bring peace around him. His fasting worked in Calcutta.

He made them sign in paper that there would be peace. After the papers were signed, Gandhi broke his seventy-three hours of fasting. Gandhi would fast for one last time on January 13, 1948. It was called the “all-in fast”. On the third day, Gandhi wished to have the government pay $125,000,000 to Pakistan. It was a progress. Finally after fasting for five days, the government undertook in writing that they would protect all Moslems. Gandhi has accomplished his fasting goal. A hand made bomb has been thrown toward Gandhi. However, it did not do any damage to him. The bombers name was Madan Lal.

Gandhi had him released and let him go not knowing his life was going to end. On January 25, 1948, the prayer meeting house was packed. On January 30, 1948, Gandhi ate his last meal at 4:30pm. Over five hundred people were waiting to listen to Gandhi talk and pray at 5:00pm. A happy Gandhi stepped toward them as he raised his arms to pray. While his arms were raised he was shot three times in the chest. As Gandhi’s smile faded, so did his life. Mahatma K. Gandhi was pronounced dead instantly. He will always be remembered as the good-hearted man who once saved India.

Gandhi may be dead today, but he continues to live inside the people of India. EVALUATION: I personally believe Gandhi was a great individual. The love he had for his people was incredible. Gandhi’s number one weapon was love. He could conquer the world with the love he gave to his people. He stood for love and peace. He was willing to travel all around South Africa, India, and England for his people. He gained peoples trust by following his word. Gandhi is probably the only leader to ever get through without violence. I personally believe the author enjoyed Gandhi’s presence.

He would join Gandhi with his 5:00am walks. Not only did Fischer visit Gandhi once, but also he visited him a second time. Fischer says in chapter 24 that Gandhi makes him feel as if he’s at home. I feel as if Fischer made the book to have people read it. Anyone that reads this book about Gandhi will fall to like him. At least I did. I had no idea who Gandhi was before I read this book. After reading it I believe Gandhi was an amazing person. The book was very interesting. I have always loved reading about history. I usually would not enjoy reading books, but Gandhi kept me on my feet.

I was very interested on how it would end. When Gandhi dies at the end, it defiantly touched my heart. I felt as if I was there watching him fall. I was upset. That’s how you know it was a good book. The only disadvantage of this book is that I would of liked to hear more about his children throughout the book. He says how he was not a great husband nor father, but he defiantly was a great leader to India. Overall, Gandhi is an awesome person that changed millions of lives. The world would defiantly not of been the same without him. Although Gandhi is now in our past, his accomplishes will remain in our future.

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