Thursday, March 3, 2011
THE RISE OF THE "NEW MAHATMA"..
Undeterred, Unfettered, Unperturbed, and Unrestrained
Phlegmatically solid he stood..every time..every where..
Exhorted million voices.. glued them to be one..
The only wish he had..A COUNTRY IN UNISON..!
4th February, 1916. It was the opening ceremony of Hindu University Central College at Banaras. Mrs. Annie Besant had started a school at Banaras in 1892, and then in 1916, it was being expanded into Hindu University Central College and 4th Feb was the day of the inaugural ceremony. Hundreds of renowned and esteemed copiously embellished Maharajas, Maharanis, Rajas, Princes and Princesses were present along with Lord Hardinge, the then Viceroy of India. Mahatma Gandhi was to address the ceremony with his speech. So every body went silent when he came at the dais. The silence was soon obliterated by an inviolable voice that transgressed, rather deplored, the audience's obscured mind. A voice never been heard before, which showed a mirror to the 'INDIANS', as they thought they were, over there..A voice that would soon conglomerate millions of voices to fetch the INDEPENDENCE from the barbed clinks of the BRITISH.
'His Highness, the Maharaja, who presided yesterday over our deliberations spoke about POVERTY of INDIA. Other leaders laid great stress upon it. But what did we witness in the great pandal ..?..Certainly a most Gorgeous show, an exhibition of Jewellery....There is no salvation for India unless you strip yourselves of this jewellery and hold it in trust for your countrymen in INDIA.'..
Every single person was shocked to hear those words being darted at them by a thin, haggard man in a white loincloth..But that was just the beginning..It was probably the eruption of all that he had experienced in the last one year after he had returned from South Africa to stay in his OWN country..As Professor Gokhale had commanded him to spend the first year in INDIA with 'his ears opened but mouth shut', he did the same. His speeches were weak, and in an unimpressive colloquial tone..But not this day.. he stood in front of them with a strong voice bolstered with anger, never ever been heard in INDIA from his mouth..
Mahatma Gandhi had returned to India in 1915, and since then he was extremely stirred by the poverty in India..He wanted the uplift of peasants..which was possible only if the politicians would drop their comforts and go among them.."How could a person in Bond Street suits or Bombay coats and trousers win peasants support..?"..More than 80% population of India was in villages..impoverished and deplored..Village Uplift was Mahatma Gandhi's primeval motive..
So, when he saw so called INDIANS dressed in adorned clothes..he could not stop his convulsion that transformed into an acerbic diatribe. He stood alone in front of the crowd..His voice was undeterred..and it censured every single person over there..didn't spare any body..
'Whenever I hear of a great palace rising in any great city in India..I become jealous and say,"Oh, it is the money that has come from the agriculturists.."..Our salvation can come only through farmers..Neither the lawyers, nor the doctors, nor the RICH landlords are going to secure it..It is a matter of deep humiliation for me.....to address my countrymen in a language FOREIGN to me..'
His sentiments provoked scattered applause..So many eyebrows were raised..but he didn't stop..
'No paper contribution will ever give us self government...'..So many aristocrats, Kings, Princes were there..He feared nobody..'It is only our conduct that will fit us for it..And how are we trying to govern ourselves..?...Is it right that the lanes of our sacred temples should be as dirty as they are..?..The houses roundabout are built anyhow..If even our temples are not models of roominess and cleanliness, what can our self government be..?'..
Mahatma Gandhi did realise the hostility and the resentment that had grown among the crowd, but he went on criticizing everyone. He even said unpalatable words against the Viceroy calling him and other British officers as "DETECTIVES IN OUR COUNTRY"..So many of the GUESTS had already left..The remaining crowd turned extremely uncongenial..and strident roars of booing and dissent could not face the TRUTH any more..'SIT DOWN, GANDHI'..crowd intimidated him..'GO on..'..few in support said.. But Mahatma Gandhi's voice was by now lost in the clamor..
Finally..Mahatma Gandhi had to stop..But his voice traveled all over the country..His words even fell into the British ears..A man who was known as a weak and calm Indian had reappeared as a courageous and indiscreet .. It didn't take long for the entire India to hear and then confront a new GANDHI, a man who defied FEAR..a man who lived like a poor and defended them..A man who renounced COMFORTS for the sake of freedom..FREEDOM OF THE POOR..
IMAGE SOURCE - http://blbsrgupta.instablogs.com/entry/mahatma-gandhi-vs-nathuram-godse/