We all have heard Gandhi's side of the story. We all consider him a saint. One of the major reasons for it is that since childhood, we've been told he's almost as great as God himself!
I have met only a handful people who have told me that they are not a Gandhi fan. I guess a lot of us don't talk about it because of the fear of being looked down upon. I mean, how can someone not like Gandhi?
Well, one of the good things that a teacher of mine has taught me is, look at both sides of the issue. You are a law student, not a news channel.
So, today when I see all kinds of social media going gaga over the Mahatma, I decided to look for answers.
Here's an interview of Gopal Godse, brother of Nathuram Godse and co-conspirator in Gandhi's assassination by time.
Read it completely with the comments, before continuing with this post.
So, the guys who killed him had their reasons. Pretty strong ones at that. About Gandhi manipulating the media, I guess we have seen a similar example very recently with Anna Hazare. In a way, he is the new Gandhi.
Gandhiji's principles of Non-violence and Civil Disobedience were not new. They are not Gandhi's principles. They are principles which he choose.
I think people sympathize with Gandhi because all his 'sufferings and pain' have been well documented and broadly showcased. Humans have a tendency of doing that. We can be guided. We have been guided.
Also, the whole "Hey Ram" controversy is also a big thing. There have been eye witnesses who have told the media that Gandhi just died. His being secular is also a question of debate. I guess he did not discriminate between people based on their religion. He only knew two kinds of people, one group that would follow him blindly and the other than won't.
I have talked to people about this topic and they have told me these things:
"Majority of his followers were lower caste people who were ignored by all sections of the society. They followed him because he projected himself as their savior. This is basic human nature. If everyone hates you and later on your find someone who thinks you are kind of okay, then you will obviously respect that someone. After he had a crowd, he targeted the leaders. Leaders supported him because he had the support of a lot of people. Nothing looks better to a politian than a large crowd of hapless people ready to vote for him if the politian supported Gandhi."
"What's with Jawaharlal Nehru being made Prime Minister? I mean, didn't Sardar Patel do all the hard work of reuniting the entire country? Or was he not charismatic enough for capture the imagination of the recently independent state?"
"He was a master manipulator. He took the issue very close to everyone's heart and then used it to his advantage."
"If we believe that based on our actions our Karma gives us what we deserve in life then him being shot dead is something that tells us a lot about the things he might have done."
These are just the ones I distinctly remember. There are a lot more of these. Ask around with a open mind and you will be surprised. Let me clarify, I am not anti-gandhi but then neither am I pro-gandhi. I just know that something is amiss.
On this Second October 2011, I want you to sit back and think about the life and events of Mahatma Gandhi. A man, who could lead capture the imagination of such a huge and diverse country was surely awesome. Let's just make sure that we don't forget the other side of the story.
To end on a lighter note:
P.S: The Facebook display picture of this blog's fan page is also related to Gandhi, go check it out. :D