fbpx
Daily Current Affairs for UPSC

Mahatma Gandhi and Satyagraha

Syllabus - Modern Indian History [GS Paper-1]

Context

On June 7, 1893 MK Gandhi was thrown off a train’s first-class compartment at the Pietermaritzburg railway station in South Africa and the incident triggered Gandhi’s first act of civil disobedience, or satyagraha.

About

  • Mahatma Gandhi, a name synonymous with peace and nonviolent resistance, has left an indelible mark on the world along with his philosophy of Satyagraha.

Birth of Satyagraha

  • The time period ‘Satyagraha’ was coined by Gandhi for the during his time in South Africa to distinguish his motion from others under the call ‘passive resistance’.
  • Derived from ‘satya’ (truth) and ‘agraha’ (insistence), Satyagraha translates to ‘truth-force’ or ‘soul-force’.
  • Unlike passive resistance, that could consist of violence and was visible as a weapon of the vulnerable, Satyagraha was a technique of nonviolent protest that might be pursued only by the strongest and absolutely excluded violence.

Pietermaritzburg Incident

  • On June 7, 1893, a younger legal professional named MK Gandhi was unceremoniously thrown off a train’s first-class compartment reserved for ‘whites only’, at the Pietermaritzburg railway station in South Africa.
  • It caused Gandhi’s first act of civil disobedience, or Satyagraha, viewed as one of the most essential moments in Gandhi’s life.

Principles of Satyagraha

  • Gandhi envisioned Satyagraha as not only a tactic to be used in acute political conflict but as a prevalent solvent for injustice and damage.
  • He requested Satyagrahis (practitioners of Satyagraha) to observe principles together with nonviolence, truth, non-stealing, non-possession, body-labour or bread-labour, control of desires, fearlessness, equal respect for all religions, and economic strategy such as boycotts of imported goods.
  • Satyagraha is extra than simply civil disobedience, and it extends from the information of correct every day residing to the development of opportunity for political and economic organisations.
  • It seeks to conquer through conversion: in the long run, there is neither defeat nor victory but rather a new concord

Satyagraha in Practice

  • One of the earliest implementations of Satyagraha in India came in the course of the Champaran movement in Bihar.
  • The socio-politically charged scenario in Champaran culminated within the ancient Champaran Satyagraha.
  • Gandhi’s intervention brought about a sizable shift inside the power dynamics between the indigo planters and the oppressed peasants.

Power of Satyagraha

  • Gandhi’s Satyagraha was not only a political tool; it was a moral and religious philosophy. It emphasized the power of truth and moral courage in achieving social and political change.
  • Gandhi believed that legal guidelines were for the welfare of society, and civil disobedience changed into a protest in opposition to the injustice devoted by the lawgivers.

Global Impact of Satyagraha

  • The standards of Satyagraha had been vital to India’s conflict for freedom, from the Non-Cooperation Movement (1919-22) to the Civil Disobedience Movement (1930-34), to the Quit India Movement (1942).
  • These standards then went on to steer other moves for justice globally, from Martin Luther King Jr’s Civil Rights Movement within the United States, to Nelson Mandela’s warfare against apartheid.

Legacy

  • Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy of Satyagraha has left a long-lasting legacy that has no longer best fashioned India’s freedom conflict however has additionally motivated numerous moves worldwide.
  • Gandhi’s philosophy of Satyagraha, advanced at some point of his time in South Africa, has become a main tool in the Indian conflict against British imperialism and has been adopted by protest groups in different international locations.
  • Today, as we navigate through numerous social and political challenges, the concepts of Satyagraha maintain to inspire tens of millions around the globe in their quest for justice and equality.

Source: The Indian Express

UPSC Mains Practice Question

Q. What was the significance of Mahatma Gandhi and Satyagraha in India’s journey of freedom struggle? (150 words)

image_pdfDownload as PDF
Alt Text Alt Text

    Image Description





    Related Articles

    Back to top button
    Shopping cart0
    There are no products in the cart!
    0