Ramachandra Guha, an esteemed biographer presented the life and importance of the Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi at the Northeastern University, in a lecture conducted by the Centre of Emerging Markets. The presentation showed the glimpses of his newly released biography, ‘Gandhi: The years that changed the world (1914 – 48)’. It narrates the struggle of Gandhi who played a vital role in liberating India from the clutches of British role. He attempts to compare Gandhi to many other famous leaders of the world and suggests that he did not rule the hearts of India by walking alone. Anybody could walk with him to his ashram and he would patiently listen to their problems and answer their questions.
He was one of the very few leaders who endured suffering to save his followers. He would submit himself to arrest if his followers were in danger. He would put himself in trouble and hunger strikes to send a message on how eager, he and the Indians were to solve the social ills existing in the society. He is rightfully called ‘The Father of Our Nation’. He encouraged young and brilliant minds, who according to him will represent India. He taught, nurtured, and made them capable enough to reach the ultimate success in glorifying India. It was his studies of Law that made him believe in nonviolence and struggle for justice. Guha says, while Gandhi way a young expatriate lawyer, he proposed the principle of resisting non-violence for the first time publicly. In my opinion, he was the most righteous leader that India had.
But was Gandhi really perfect? Guha says, “He was an indifferent husband, and he could be an awful father.” Resisting and confronting one of the most dangerous challenges faced in India, he forgot the people who filled his four walls and made it home. He was also said to be adamant in introducing women in politics. He was a man who knew and followed psychology which made him listen to his enemies patiently. He was open to hearing and examining the opposition’s point of view. It was the ambitions of the British that helped him to conquer India and the hearts of its citizens. He helped his followers in taking India to a position where they craved and dreamt India to be. He was known as the man who walked with the crowd to reach freedom as his destination.