150 th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi (2nd October,2019) was celebrated with much fanfare and noise all over India and also in some places in other countries. High sounding tributes have been paid to Mahatma Gandhi by several so called world leaders with journals and newspapers, particularly in India, carrying many articles about different aspects of Mahatma Gandhi’s life and highlighting his contribution to the world peace and happiness. Is this enough ?
After celebrating Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary, the world will go back to it’s normal routine, which mean violence, hatred and animosity, that are totally contrary to Mahatma Gandhi’s advocacies and preachings .
Mahatma Gandhi called for honesty and probity in public and private life of individuals and he believed that without reforming the mindset of individuals , the world cannot become a better and more harmonious place. He called for non violence, adherence to truth, courage of conviction ,simplicity in living and outlook in the life of every individual and set personal example to others by his own behavior and practices.
Mahatma Gandhi had the courage of conviction to go to England to attend the Round Table Conference during India’s freedom struggle , dressed in simple dhoti as the poor men did in India then. When reporters in England asked him how he could meet the king in such dress, Mahatma Gandhi said , with the contempt for rich people and with sense of humour, that “king has enough clothes for both of us
”. Not many of those who claim that they are followers of Mahatma Gandhi’s teachings follow his simple life style any more , showing their solidarity with the deprived people in the world.
India called him the father of the nation and several world leaders called him as torch bearer of truth and peace .
However, is the world really observing Mahatma Gandhi’s guidance and philosophy?. It is certainly not so.
We often see politicians , business men and bureaucrats, who are known to be corrupt and dishonest and some of them facing serious charges of nepotism in judiciary and have even gone to jail for corrupt dealings and misdeeds, vying with each other to garland the statue of Mahatma Gandhi during his birth and death anniversary day and posing for photograph with Gandhiji’s statue. This is the biggest mockery to the reputation of Mahatma Gandhi ,as most of these people paying tributes to him do not measure up to the standards set by Mahatma Gandhi in their personal life even to a small extent.
Today, there are very very few people who live upto the standards of life set by Mahatma Gandhi and wherever there are such people, they are not known and media would not publicise about them.
To live upto the cherished values of Mahatma Gandhi, the essential requirement are adherence to scruples and not having greed for money and power. How many people can be seen with such qualities these days ?
Several decades back, Einstein paid glowing tributes to Mahatma Gandhi and said that future generations would not believe that such a man of great and noble spirit ever existed and walked on the earth. Time has proved that Einstein was correct.
The world will remember Mahatma Gandhi once again during his next birth anniversary that would fall on 2nd October, 2020 and the routine will continue year after year.
In future, children in formative age group would read and would be told about the Mahatma Gandhi’s life and his principles , as if they are folk stories, just as the incidents in mythology are told to the children.
Of course, as the world move on, more Gandhi forums would be set up and more institutions would spring up bearing the name of Mahatma Gandhi and avenues and roads will be built in the name of Mahatma Gandhi . While all these cosmetic exercises would continue, Mahatma Gandhi’S principles of non violence, probity and truth would be largely forgotten or ignored.
A few people who still live amongst us today and who have participated in various struggles launched by Mahatma Gandhi ,certainly feel disappointed about the lip respect that Mahatma Gandhi get today.
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