India and the World today remembers and pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi who has became the international symbol of non-violence and peace. Known for his non-violent campaigns, freedom movements, civil disobedience, Mahatma Gandhi was termed as one who had always come forward to fought for peoples’ human rights. ‘Father of the Nation’ Mahatma Gandhi worked for Indian Independence and against the cruel British rule led masses of people to shape and lead India’s freedom movement to the paths of victory.
Truly an icon, Gandhi during entire time of his life was able to inspire people with his pathway of proceeding on non-violence, truth, tolerance and taking initiatives to serve the society.
Mahatma Gandhi faced an encounter with racial segregation when he was thrown off from the first class compartment of a train after being objected by a white man gave him a shock and it was after that when he decided to fight for civil and human rights.
Gandhi who gathered people in masses, united them under the objective of India‘s freedom movement was acclaimed as humanitarian and political figure in the country and the world.
Here we remember five massive movements led by Mahatma Gandhi that shaped India’s freedom struggle:
Salt March also known as Dandi March
Know for his famous Satyagraha ideology, Gandhi started Satyagraha against Britishers’ salt tax in March 1930. Gandhi organised the revolutionary 241 miles (more than 340KM) salt march to the sea. According to various observes of Gandhi’s work from around the world, the salt march was probably one of the most symbolic act of Gandhi’s life against the unjust-full British law. In the same year, Gandhi was declared as Time ‘Magazine’s Man of the Year’. Gandhi started a Satyagraha campaign against the salt tax in March 1930. Gandhi along with masses marched from Ahmedabad to Dandi in Gujarat to make salt.
Quit India Movement
Gandhi’s Quit India Movement is known all across the world, when he neglected down Indian participation in the World War II to help the Britishers in their efforts in war. Gandhi’s argument was that India cannot be party to a war that was being fought for democratic freedom when the nation itself was being government by foreign rule. During the second World War, Gandhi in his woo for India’s independence, intensified his demand asking Britishers to Quit India in a speech which he delivered in Mumbai, 1942. He conveyed to the masses in India as part of his Quit India Movement to ‘Karo Ya Maro’ (Do or Die) for Indian independence but also said not to kill or injure any British people, once again preaching his agenda of non-violence.
Another important movement that played its pivotal role in shaping India’s freedom movement was Gandhi’s non-cooperation movement against the British ruling which was triggered after the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre. Gandhi conveyed and tried to put in minds of the people in India to practice non-cooperation with the Britishers to weaken their hold on them. Gandhi asked masses to refuse to buy British goods, adopt the use of local handicrafts. The movement was launched on August 1, 1920.
Gandhi in order to take India’s freedom struggle ahead, approached the Muslim community and sought political cooperation from the them against the British rule by supporting the Ottoman empire. The community was massively influenced by Gandhi and he initially got strong support. Other Indian leaders like Rabindranath Tagore questioned Gandhi’s leadership because they were largely against supporting the Sunni Islamic Caliph in Turkey. However, the movement further helped raising Gandhi’s status as a political leader to lead India’s freedom movement against the British.
Marked as one of the first initiatives taken by Gandhi in his fight for freedom struggle when farmers of Champaran in Bihar sought his help. Champaran farmers were forced to grow Indigo, a cash crop whose demand was declining and were forced to sell it to the planters at a fixed price. Gandhi once again walking on his pathway of non-violence won concessions from the authorities
Gandhi through his peaceful acts of resistance which included boycotts, protests and fasting helped India gain independence in August 15, 1947. Unfortunately, six months later on January 30, 1948, Gandhi was shot dead when an assassin fired 3 bullets in his chest at point blank range.