Gandhiji as a supreme leader

 12/8/2017  540

 Gandhiji returned to India from South Africa on 9th of January 1915 the day we celebrate as Pravasi Bhartiya diwas . By 1920, Gandhiji attained the place of supreme leader in India’s freedom struggle ,so one could wonder how Gandhiji attained so much popularity among Indian people in such a short time . What were the reasons of his popularity we need to find out –
The stories of his success in struggle against south African white regime had already reached every corner of India through news papers and by Gokhle who was on a tour of India and was briefing Indians about Gandhiji and his style of struggle so Gandhiji had already became popular before he put his foot on Indian soil in January 1915 .
A situation of leadership vacuum had developed in India by 1919-1920 .Most of the prominent leaders like Gopal Krishna Gokhle and Feroz Shah Mehta were no more ,Bal Gangadhar Tilak died in August 1920 the day ,Non cooperation movement was started ,also the Indian nationalists were looking for a new form of struggle & new leadership that could be effective against British government. This quest for alternative had also played an important role in the rapid rise of Gandhiji.
The early successes of Gandhian movement in India in the form of Champaran and Kheda satyagrah, where Gandhiji fought for the rights of poor peasants and in Ahmdabad where Gandhiji fought for the mill workers,convinced the masses that only Gandhian methods could succeed against British government.
The charismatic personality of Gandhiji attracted millions towards him. He was a living saint. He practised what he preached like during Non Cooperation Movement there was a complaint at a students meeting Gandhiji addressed in Madurai that Khadi was too costly,Gandhiji retorted that the answer lay in wearing less clothes and from that day he discarded his dhoti and kurta in favour of a langot for the rest of his life he remained a “half-naked fakir”.
Gandhiji lived like a most ordinary Indain citizen.He used the language of commons.He was easily accessible to all.His movement attracted every section of Indian population towards it as anybody could participate in Gandhian struggle without difficulty. As a result of this the faith of the masses continued to increase in his leadership.
So we can say that there were many factors behind the rise of Gandhiji as supreme leader but at the same time we can not ignore his unique style of leadership and the way he changed his strategies according to the demand of situations .We can also say that it was destiny of India that we got freedom through his leadership.

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Harmanjot Singh When Mahatma Gandhi (he got mahatma’s title later) arrived in the scene of Indian freedom movement, there were, within India, many leaders of stature already working for India’s freedom. These India based leaders had not accepted one among them as the supreme leader because they all had similar stature and plans for going about India’s freedom. All of them were men and women of great brains and action but none solely relying on conscience and non violence like Mahatma Gandhi. Therefore, Mahatma Gandhi’s approach of non violence and using conscience as the guide was a very refreshing thought for all, which they had not thought of before for freedom movement. All of them fell for it and accepted Mahatma Gandhi as their supreme leader because he was well qualified for leading the freedom movement on his proposed agenda which was already proved useful and effective in South Africa. These leaders, decided almost unanimously, to go by his agenda and under his leadership. Please note that almost all the leaders of that time were highly motivated souls and thought only of India’s independence without any hidden personal agenda for some personal gain. Even now, if there is serious threat to the security and integrity of India, the present political leaders, who appear to be fighting with each other at all times, will join hands and forget their personal agendas. This is what makes India unique and is sustaining its democracy and secularism despite some minorities being too fussy about some of their religious practices which are outdated and not in consonanice with India’s constitution. However, personal agendas will come up again when there is no external threat to India. Although Mahatma Gandhi’s method of non violence and getting guidance from conscience was useful and effective in South Africa, in a limited sense for a lesser objective than freedom for a country, but it was yet to be tested as to whether this method can earn freedom for India. SO HERE IS THE REAL MATTER TO BE UNDERSTOOD IN MAHATMA’s METHOD, HIS CHARISHMA ; AND FORESIGHTEDNESS AS WELL AS MAGNANIMITY OF THE LEADERS OF THAT TIME. THESE LEADERS ACCEPTED HIM AS THE SUPREME LEADER WITHOUT PROOF OF METHODS LIKE THAT OF THE MAHATMA HAVING EVER BROUGHT INDEPENDENCE TO ANY COUNTRY FROM FOREIGN RULE. AS THE GREAT GEORGE WASHINGTON SAID THAT HE SAW HAND OF GOD, MANY TIMES, DURING REVOLUTION, IT WAS HAND OF GOD, HELPING INDIA’s FREEDOM MOVMENT UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF MAHATMA GANDHI WHO PROPAGATED HIS METHOD WITHOUT THE BENEFIT OF ANY PAST EXAMPLE FOR SUCH A GIGANTIC TASK, AND OTHER LEADERS AND INDIA’s MASSES ACCEPTING HIS PATH AND HIM AS SUPRRME LEADER. The Indian revolutionaries could not become part of Mahatma Gandhi’s team as they did not agree to give up the path of violence to oust the British. They had doubt on the effectiveness of non violence with enemy. Mahatma Gandhi didn't consider the British as enemies which was beyond the comprehension of revolutionaries. It is my surmise that Mahatma Gandhi and revolutionaries parted ways in a friendly manner with the revolutionaries telling him that he will need their help, one day, and that they will render it if asked for. This need never arose (due to hand of God). But if the British had been adamant not to grant freedom and had they unleashed a reign of terror then probably Mahatma Gandhi would have given up his movement and the revolutionaries would have taken over AND THERE WOULD HAVE BEEN THE REPEAT OF AMERICAN REVOLUTION, in India also against the British, after 171 years. In that case, India would have become independent, by resorting to violence, much before the year 1947 when it got the independence from the British without violent revolution. I feel that it was better that India got independence under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi, though belatedly, through non violence, and Indians were spared of the repeat of American civil war which was a cruel setback to them after 84 years from declaration of independence.

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Aditi Gandhiji was the one who showed us the path in getting independence.He was the one who actually taught us to fight against britishers and get freedom that too without any violence.He was completely againt violence and that was his major strenght m,fighting but with silence.

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