Mahatma Gandhi Biography

Mahatma Gandhi Information

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, or more popularly known as Mahatma Gandhi, was born in a small city of Gujarat, in Porbandar (October 2, 1869 - January 30, 1948). He was a politician, social activist, Indian Lawyer, and writer who became the prominent Leader of the nationwide surge movement against the British rule of India.  He came to be known as the Father of this nation. Gandhi was a living embodiment of non-violent protest(Satyagraha) to achieve independence from the British Empire's clutches and thereby getting political and social progress. Gandhi was the one who was considered as The Great Soul or The Mahatma in the eyes of millions and millions of his fellow Indians. The scale of the vast crowds gathered around to see him speaks at the significant volume of the unthinking obsession of his followers. He could hardly work during the day and rest at night. His fame spread throughout the world during his lifetime and only increased after his demise. Mahatma Gandhi is the most renowned person on earth.


Mahatma Gandhi During his Youth

Gandhi was the youngest of his father's fourth wife. Karamchand  Gandhi was the dewan Chief minister) of Porbandar, the then capital of a small municipality in western India(now Gujarat state) under the British constituency, did not have any formal education per se. However, he was an able administrator who was more than capable enough to make his way between the inconsistent and unpredictable princes, their long-suffering subjects, and the stubborn and ignorant British Officer in power.


Gandhi's mother, Putlibai, was a pious religious woman who had no such greed for jewellery or finery divided her time between her home and the temple, fasted frequently, and immersed herself in the service of others who were sick or were helpless in the family. Mohandas grew up in Vaishnavism, a practice followed by the worship of the Hindu god Vishnu with a strong presence of Jainism, which has a strong sense of non-violence and that each and everything in this universe is eternal.


Therefore, he took up the practice of ahimsa (noninjury to all living beings), fasting for self-purification, vegetarianism, and mutual tolerance between the sanctions of various creeds and colour.


He always uttered the words, "to carry out the orders of the elders, not to scan them." With such extreme reluctancy, so it was not that surprising that he should have gone through a phase of rebellion in his adolescence stage, followed by personal rejection of God or atheism, petty thefts, furtive smoking, and—most shocking of all for a boy born in a Vaishnava family—meat-eating. His adolescence was probably no stormier than most children of his age and class. Not until the age of 18, Gandhi had read a single newspaper. Neither as a budding barrister in India nor as a student in England, nor had he shown much interest in politics. Indeed, he was overwhelmed by a terrifying stage fright each time he stood up to read a speech at a social gathering or to defend a client in court.


Political Career of Mahatma Gandhi:

Nevertheless, in July 1894, when he was barely 25, he blossomed within an overnight into a proficient campaigner. He drafted several petitions to the British government and the Natal Legislature and signed by hundreds of his compatriots. He could not prevent the passage of the bill but succeeded in drawing the attention of the public and the press in Natal, India, and England to the Natal Indian's problems. He still was persuaded to settle down in Durban to practice law and thus organized the Indian community. The Natal Indian Congress was founded in 1894, of which he became the unwearying secretary. He infused a solidarity spirit in the heterogeneous Indian community through that standard political organization. He gave ample statements to the Government, Legislature, and media regarding Indian Grievances. Finally, he is exposed to the outside world's view, the real story, and the ugly side in the imperial cupboard. This discrimination was pre-dominant against the Indian subjects of Queen Victoria in one of her colonies in Africa. It was proof of his success as a publicist that such vital newspapers as The Statesman and Englishman of Calcutta (now Kolkata)and The Times of London editorially commented on the Natal Indians' grievances.


Mahatma Gandhi spent almost 21 years in South Africa. But during that time, there was a lot of discrimination there because of skin colour. Even inside the train, he could not sit with white European people. But he refused to do so and got beaten there and had to sit on the floor. So he fought against this nasty thing and finally got to succeed after a lot of struggle.


In 1896, Gandhi returned to India to fetch his wife, Kasturba (or Kasturbai), and their two oldest children and amass support for the Indians overseas. He met the prominent leaders and persuaded them to address the public meetings in the centre of the country's principal cities. Unfortunately for him, middle versions of his activities and utterances reached Natal and provoked its European population. Joseph Chamberlain, the colonial secretary in the British Cabinet, urged Natal's government to bring the guilty men to proper jurisdiction, but Gandhi refused to prosecute his assailants. He said it was his belief the court of law would not be used to satisfy someone's vendetta.


Death of Mahatma Gandhi:

Mahatma Gandhi's death was a tragic event and brought clouds of sorrow to millions of people. On the 29th of January, a man named Nathuram Godse came to Delhi with an automatic pistol. In the evening, at about 5 pm, he went to Gardens of Birla house, and in a sudden, a man from the crowd came out and bowed before him. Then he fired three bullets in his chest and stomach. Mahatma Gandhi was in such a posture as welcoming that man to kill him and fall to the ground. During his death, he uttered Ram Ram. Although someone could have called the doctor in this critical situation during that time, no one thought of that, and Gandhiji died within half an hour.


In the boarding houses and vegetarian restaurants of England, Gandhi met not only the food enthusiasts but some earnest men and women to whom he owed the introduction to the Bible and, more importantly, the Bhagavadgita, which he read for the first time in its English translation by Sir Edwin Arnold.

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FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What was People's Reaction After Nathuram Godse Killed Mahatma Gandhi?

When Nathuram Godse killed Mahatma Gandhi people shouted to kill Nathuram. After killing Mahatma Gandhi, Nathuram Godse tried to kill himself but was unable to do so since the police seized his weapons and took him to jail. After that, Gandhiji's body was laid in the garden with a white cloth-covered on his face. All the lights were turned off in honour of him. Then on radio, honourable Prime minister Pandit Nehru Ji declared sadly as the nation's Father is no more.

2. What was the Hobby of Mahatma Gandhi?

The Bhagavadgita (commonly known as the Gita) is a part of the great epic the Mahabharata. In the form of a philosophical poem, it is the most famous expression of Hinduism. The English vegetarians were a motley crowd. They included humanitarians and socialists such as Edward Carpenter, “the British Thoreau,” Fabians such as George Bernard Shaw, and Theosophists such as Annie Besant. Most of them were idealists; quite a few were rebels who rejected the very prevailing values of the late-Victorian establishment, denounced the industrial society and the evil of the capitalists, encouraged the cult of the simple life and stressed the dominance and superiority of moral over material values and of cooperation over conflict. Those ideas were the main reasons that contributed substantially to the shaping of Gandhi’s personality and, eventually, his political career.

3. What was the Educational Background of Mahatma Gandhi?

Gandhi took his studies very seriously and tried hard to brush up his English and Latin by taking the matriculation exam at the University of London. During the three years he spent in England, he was preoccupied and was in a great dilemma with personal and moral issues rather than with academic ambitions. The sudden transition from the half-rural atmosphere of Porbandar to the cosmopolitan life of London was not an easy task for him. And he struggled powerfully and painfully to adapt himself to Western food, dress, and etiquette, and he felt awkward. His vegetarianism became a continual source of embarrassment to him and was like a curse to him; his friends warned him that it would disrupt his studies and his health and well being. Fortunately enough for him, he came across a vegetarian restaurant as well as a book providing a well-defined defence of vegetarianism, which subsequently became a matter of conscience for him, not merely a legacy of his Vaishnavism background. The missionary zeal that he developed for vegetarianism helped draw the pitifully shy youth out of his shell and gave him a new and robust personality. He also became a member of the London Vegetarian Society executive committee, contributing articles to its journal and attending the conferences.

4. Who was Jawaharlal Nehru?

Jawaharlal Nehru was one of the great Indian nationalist leaders who worked very hard for independence and social reforms in the country. He was born on November 14 ( now celebrated as childrens' day), 1889 and departed in 1964). He was elected as the first Prime Minister of independent India. Jawaharlal Nehru was born in Allahabad where he spent his childhood with a wealthy Kashmiri Brahmin family. Motilal Nehru, Jawaharlal Nehru's father was also an influential politician. His childhood was spent in a luxurious home with 2 swimming pools and at the age of 11, he was blessed with 2 baby sisters. He was home-educated by  English and Scottish tutors, under whose influence, joined the Theosophical Society when he was just 13. He left for England at the age of 15 for further studies, where was admitted to Harrow and Cambridge in London.  He was known for his exotic tastes and his elegance. While staying in London, Nehru was tempted towards nationalism and socialism.

Congress won India's first elections that took place in 1951-1952 and economic planning and welfare were the first claims on Nehru's watch. Nehru began with socialist planning as the concentration of public investment in several areas of the economy were unrestricted from private interests. In 1950, the Planning Commission was created. In 1951, the Planning Commission launched the 1st Five-Year Plan. The plan focused on increasing agricultural output. Nehru took pride in the Community Development Program which was a plan that was to raise the standard of living of the people residing in the villages. He was also the creator of nonalignment in foreign policy. Nehru's non-alignment policy was hated by many people. Some of them were Indian while many of them were foreigners. Some Indians gave priority to totalitarian countries rather than democracies.

Jawaharlal Nehru believed in pluralism, socialism, leftism, and the idea of democracy. He had an enormous love for children and now his birthday (14th of November) is celebrated as National Children's Day in India. Jawaharlal Nehru sustained and developed a way for India's education by anticipating the top tier institutions of India. Some of those institutes are still the most prestigious places to study in India. Some of the institutes were the IITs (Indian Institute of Technology), AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Sciences) and the ISP (India's first Space Program). He died in New Delhi in 1964 and the country appreciates his existence and mourns for his demise. 

5. How to write a biography?

A biography is a detailed 3rd-person account of another person’s life events and stories. A biography of a person includes information varying from basic information like their birthplace, education, etc to important life-changing events. It also chronicles relationships with friends and family as well as important people in the subject's life who aided them to achieve something. The biography also includes the major occurrences in the subject’s youth and how those impacted their life. A biography points to the different achievements and life events of a real person. It is written more than just for facts and figures, a biography is written to share stories and inspire the reader with limitless possibilities. To write a good biography, the writer should follow some important steps, they are-

  • Timeline- A biography can be lengthy and might contain a lot of unnecessary details, which sometimes overshadows the original life-changing stories. In these circumstances, a timeline helps the writer to figure out how they structure the biography and highlight the main points of a person’s life in chronological order. This even makes the job of the writer a little easy as unimportant information can be eliminated and the biography can be made more interesting to read.

  • Flashbacks- Flashbacks help to compare the time between an experience from the subject’s adult life and something from their school days or other times of life. The flashbacks permit the author to introduce relevant past data about the subject to the reader and help them to understand the mindset change or the key moments that lead to an interesting life.

  • Thesis- The first paragraph of the biography of a given person, should declare to the reader about the person and what they will understand and read about them. A thesis creates a statement about the biography, which the rest of the biography will provide appropriate data to support. The thesis makes the transaction of information between the reader and the writer clear and precise.

  • Sources- Sources are the most important thing as they are the primary basis or origin of the information that the reader is going to showcase in their biography. Before starting a biography, research is the most important thing the writer should do from all possible verticals. This helps to gather different opinions and provide extensive information to the reader. This makes it easy for the writer to form strong opinions about the subject and deliver them through his writing.