Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Profession: Politician, Lawyer, Peace Activist, Philosopher


Brothers of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Laxmidas Karamchand Gandhi,
Karsandas Gandhi

Father of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Karamchand Gandhi, Dewan (chief minister) of Porbandar state

Mother of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Putlibai Gandhi (Homemaker)

Sister of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Raliatbehn Gandhi

Wife of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Kasturba Gandhi

Favourite Author of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Leo Tolstoy

Favourite Persons of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Gautama Buddha, Harishchandra, and his mother Putlibai

Controversies of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

In 2016, some Ghanian students called for the removal of a statue of Mahatma Gandhi from a university campus. They accused Gandhi of being racist towards black people by holding the view that Indians were higher than them. This view was also held by two South African professors Ashwin Desai and Goolam Vahed who claimed that Gandhi labelled black Africans as 'savage,' 'raw' and "indolent'. Gandhi also demanded separate entrances for blacks and Indians at the Durban post office while he was living in South Africa.   In 1906, Gandhi took an oath to abstain from sex life. Gandhi carried out several experiments to test himself as a celibate. He brought his grandniece Manubehn to sleep naked in his bed as part of a spiritual experiment in which Gandhi could test himself as a "Brahmachari". Several other young women and girls also sometimes shared his bed as part of his experiments. These experiments took flak from most of the Indian Politicians and the people of India.  

Information about Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Bewildered with the discriminations faced by the Indians in South Africa, on May 1894, he proposed an organisation to watch the interest of Indians, and on 22 August 1894, it finally resulted in the foundation of Natal Indian Congress to fight colour prejudice.  Mahatma Gandhi was inspired by the idea of Satyagraha by a letter written to Tarak Nath Das by the Russian pacifist Leo Tolstoy. He took the idea back to India in 1915.  In India, he was introduced to Raychandbhai (Whom Gandhiji regarded as his Guru).  In 1994, when black South Africans gained the right to vote, Mahatma Gandhi was proclaimed a national hero with numerous monuments.  Sources claim that the 1943 film 'Ram Rajya' was the only film that Mahatma Gandhi had ever seen.  Date of Death - 30-Jan-1948  Richard Attenborough's 1982 film, 'Gandhi,' won the Academy Award for Best Picture.  In 1930, Time magazine named Mahatma Gandhi, the 'Man of the Year.'  In December 1929, Gandhiji's resolution on 'Complete Independence' was adopted at the open session of Lahore Congress.  While in India, Mahatma Gandhi joined the Indian National Congress. It was Gopal Krishna Gokhale who introduced him to Indian issues, politics, and the Indian people.  On 2 October 1869, in a dark, windowless room, Putlibai gave birth to her last child, Mohandas, in Porbandar.  In June 1891, at the age of 22, he was called to the British Bar and enrolled in the High Court. The same year he returned to India where he found that his mother had died while he was in London.  On 30 January 1948, while on his way to evening prayer ground at Birla House (now Gandhi Smriti), Mahatma Gandhi was shot dead by a Right-Wing Extremist, Nathuram Vinayak Godse.  In 1910, he established the 'Tolstoy Farm' near Johannesburg (an idealistic community).  In November 1887, at the age of 18, he graduated from high school in Ahmedabad.  On 15 January 1942, he declared, 'My political successor is Jawaharlal.'  With the intention of becoming a barrister, he enrolled at the Inner Temple in London and studied there Law and Jurisprudence. His childhood shyness continued in London also. However, he started adopting 'English Customs', like English-speaking, taking dance classes, etc.  In December 1924, he presided the Congress Session at Belgaum, for the first and only time.  Between 13 and 22 November 1909, he wrote 'Hind Swaraj' in Gujarati on board S.S.Kildonan Castle on the way to South Africa from London.  In May 1883, at the age of 13, Mohandas married 14-years-old Kasturbai Makhanji Kapadia (shortened to 'Kasturba', and affectionately to 'Ba'). Recalling the day of their marriage, Mahatma Gandhi once said, 'As we didn't know much about marriage, for us it meant only wearing new clothes, eating sweets and playing with relatives.' He also described with regret the lustful feelings he had for his young bride.  In June 1893, At Pietermaritzburg station, Mohandas Gandhi was ordered to go into the van compartment of the train although he held a 1st class ticket. On his refusal, he was forcibly ejected, his bundles pitched out after him. He was left to shiver at the platform all night.  Mahatma Gandhi was also a central figure in the 2006 Bollywood comedy film Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006).  Place of Death - New Delhi, India  On 17 September 1924, he started 21 days fast for Hindu-Muslim unity.  Death Cause - Assassination by shooting  In October 1899, after the break of Boer War, Mohandas Gandhi joined Ambulance Corps. To support British combat troops against the Boers, he raised 1100 Indian Volunteers. For this Gandhi and 37 other Indians received the Queen's South Africa Medal.  Nelson Mandela was also inspired by Gandhian principles that he used it to good effect during the apartheid movement and successfully ended the white rule. It is stated that Mandela concluded what Gandhi had initiated.  On 4 September 1888, he sailed off Bombay to London.  In 1906, Gandhi vowed to abstain from sex life. Gandhi introduced several experiments to test himself as a celibate. He brought his grandniece Manubehn to sleep naked in his bed as part of a spiritual experiment in which Gandhi could test himself as a 'Brahmachari'. Several other young women and girls also sometimes shared his bed as part of his experiments.  When he was 11, he joined a high school in Rajkot. There he was an average student and was very shy.  On 8 October 1919, the 1st issue of 'Young India' was released under Gandhiji's Editorship.  In January 1888, the young Gandhi enrolled at Samaldas College in Bhavnagar State. However, he dropped out and returned to Porbandar.  In 2007, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declared 2 October (Gandhi's birthday) as 'The International Day of Nonviolence.'  On 10 March 1922, he was arrested and sent to Yervada Jail and remained in jail until March 1924.  While at High School, he met a Muslim friend named Sheikh Mehtab. Mehtab encouraged him to eat meat to gain height. Mehtab also took him to a brothel one day. The experience was quite disturbing for Mohandas, and he left the company of Mehtab.  On 10 August 1888, on the advice of Mavji Dave Joshiji (a Brahmin priest and family friend), Mohandas left Porbandar for Bombay with an aim to pursue Law Studies in London. People warned him that England would tempt him eating meat and drinking alcohol. To this, Gandhi made a vow in front of his mother that he would abstain from alcohol, meat, and women.  On 12 January 1891, he passed the Law Examination.  In 1948, Mahatma Gandhi opposed the partition of India along religious lines.  Mahatma Gandhi's mother was an extremely pious lady, and he was deeply influenced by her. She would never take meals without daily prayers. To keep 2 or 3 consecutive fasts was normal to her. Perhaps, it was his mother who inspired Gandhiji to keep long fasts in his later years.  Although his father, Karamchand Gandhi, only had an elementary education. He proved to be a capable Chief Minister of Porbandar State. Previously, Karamchand was posted as a clerk in the state administration.  In May 1894, the Abdullah case that had brought him to South Africa was concluded.  On 11 September 1906, for the first time, he adopted 'Satyagraha' (a nonviolent protest) against the Transvaal Government, which had enacted a new law compelling registration of the colonies of Indian and Chinese populations.  In 1919, after the end of the First World War, Mahatma Gandhi supported the Ottoman Empire and sought political cooperation from Muslims in his fight against the British Imperialism.  After the Chauri-Chaura incident in February 1922, he withdrew the Non-Co-operation Movement.  In 1996, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) introduced 'The Gandhi Series' of banknotes 10 and 500 rupee banknotes. Since its introduction in 1996, this series has replaced all banknotes issued before 1996.  He was born as Mohandas Gandhi to a Hindu Modh Baniya family in Porbandar (also known as Sudamapuri).  During his tenure as the Chief Minister of Porbandar, Karamchand married 4 times (1st 2 wives died young after each had given birth to a daughter). Karamchand's 3rd marriage was childless. In 1857, Karamchand had his 4th marriage with Putlibai (1841-1891).  In 1969, Soviet Union had issued a stamp of Mahatma Gandhi in his honour.  In April 1917, being persuaded by a local money lender in Champaran named Raj Kumar Shukla, Mahatma Gandhi visited Champaran to address the issue of Indigo farmers. It was Mahatma Gandhi's first protest against the British atrocities in India.  In 1885, his father died, at that time Mahatma Gandhi was 16-years-old. The same year, he also had his first child, who survived for only a few days. Later, the couple had 4 more children, all sons: Harilal (b. 1888), Manilal (b. 1892), Ramdas (1897), and Devdas (1900).  Gandhi was nominated 5 times for the Nobel Peace Prize from 1937 to 1948 but never received it, and when it was decided to award him on the 5th occasion, he was assassinated before that.  While in London, he joined 'Vegetarian Society' and was elected to its Executive Committee. Most of the vegetarians he met there were members of Theosophical Society (established in New York City in 1875). They encouraged Mohandas Gandhi to join the Theosophical Society.  At the age of 9, he entered a local school near his house in Rajkot.  He started practising Law in Bombay. However, it failed as he lacked psychological tactics to cross-examine witnesses. Then, he returned to Rajkot, where he started a modest living by drafting petitions for litigants. However, after a brawl with a British Officer, he was forced to stop his work.  In May 1915, he founded Satyagraha Ashram at Kochrab in Ahmedabad.  On 22 February 1944, his wife, Kasturba Gandhi died. A saree woven from yarn spun by Gandhiji was wrapped around her body.  In 2006, Geir Lundestad the Secretary of Norwegian Nobel Committee said 'The greatest omission in our 106- year history is undoubtedly that Mahatma Gandhi never received the Nobel Peace Prize.'  In 1968, the first biographical documentary film on Mahatma Gandhi, 'Mahatma: Life of Gandhi, 1869–1948,' (by Vithalbhai Jhaveri) was released.  Winston Churchill (the then British Prime Minister) was a staunch critic of Mahatma Gandhi. He termed him a dictator, a 'Hindu Mussolini.'  His mother, Putlibai, was from a Pranami Vaishnava family of Junagadh.  Although Indians widely describe him as 'The Father of The Nation,' the Government of India hasn't accorded the title officially. According to sources, the title was first used by Subhash Chandra Bose in a Radio Address (on Singapore Radio) on 6 July 1944.  On 8 March 1942, Addressed All India Congress Committee of Bombay and delivered his famous Quit India Speech and urged Indians to 'Karo Ya Maro' (Do or die).  On 12 March 1930, he started his famous Dandi March (388 kilometres from Ahmedabad to Dandi) to break the Salt Law.  During 1920-1921, he led the Khilafat and non-Co-operation Movements.  On 9 January 1915, he returned to India. Since 2003, the day is celebrated as 'Pravasi Bhartiya Divas' in India.  On 28 October 1934, he declared his intention to retire from Congress.  In 1893, a Muslim merchant named Dada Abdullah met Mohandas Gandhi. Abdullah had a large shipping business in South Africa, and Abdullah's distant cousin, who lived in Johannesburg, needed a lawyer. Abdullah offered £105 plus travel expenses to him, which he happily accepted.  Mahatma Gandhi First Satyagraha in South Africa  In 1936, Mahatma Gandhi founded Sevagram Ashram at Wardha.  The classic Indian stories of king Harishchandra and Shravana had a great impact on Gandhiji's childhood. In an interview, he said, 'It haunted me, and I must have acted Harishchandra to myself times without number.' We can trace Gandhiji's early encounter with truth, love, and sacrifice to these stories. 


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