Wednesday, April 05, 2006
When did I first meet Gandhi??
It just suddenly struck me, while I was compiling notes for history. Gandhi as a journlaist.....
"When was it that I first met Mahatma?" Was it at a school function? A history lesson in class? A passing mention in a politicians campaign speech? Or did I question the identity of the bald man present on every currency I used to buy my chocolates? My memory fails me and like many others I don't remember my first meeting with Mahatma.
But whichever way I met him; this man left a lasting impression. In my quest to know him better I found out that clad in a dhoti, with the support of a lathi and armed with truth and non-violence my Mahatma, 'Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi'; for official records had led our way through the dark forests of slavery.
During my many more meetings with this man through 'his experiments with truth' and his journey 'from Gandhi to Mahatma', I realized that he was an apostle of truth, peace and non-violence.
Today this most celebrated citizen of India suffers from an identity crisis. Do we remember the freedom fighter... the lawyer... Bapu... the nanga fakir... the mahatma...the philanthropist... the father of the nation? How do we recognize him? Or do we recognize him at all?
While writing about Gandhi, I hate to lie. I have forgotten my Mahatma and his teachings. I vote for caste, kill for religion and worship fanatism. I create truths; structure lies and believes that the only way of survival is "an eye for an eye". I'm helpless. I can only silently watch my Mahatma die.
Its not just his ways, I fear soon Gandhi will be ousted. Sponged off our present! What'll remain may be is his feeble presence in history.
Gandhi's Gujarat burns in a communal fury, Jessica cries for justice, diplomats chalk out war plans, and soldier kills his fellowman. Morality is publicly raped and my nation weeps Gandhi's death in as many different ways.
A candlelight protest to throw light on injustice... a hunger strike to save hundreds of lives ... I resurrect from my Mahatma's ashes... the phoenix of a nation on the rise!