Why Gandhi was not a coward.
Mahatma Gandhi was regarded as a coward by some extremist factions of the Indian National Congress & ordinary indians of the time. Because Gandhi, Nehru & Gokhale had yearned for a dominion status by peaceful non-cooperation & Satyagraha. While, leaders like Subhash C. Bose, Bhagat Singh, Azad & the “Bal, Lal, Pal” triad were inclining towards violent methods for total independence of Indian State from British Imperial rule. This made the Extermists a exotic choice for the angry indians after seeing Jalianwala Bagh massacre & Rowlatt Act. But what most people don’t know is that Gandhiji also supported a violent revolution implicitly however for obvious reasons.
What was Gandhi Thinking.
Since 1857 India has been directly ruled by the british crown as a colony. And before that india was independent in 16th century after which european power struggles began in india subcontinent. You have to understand USA gained independence in 18th century (1775). So, the west primarily USA & it’s now NATO allies didn’t have any prior connections with the indians. So, Gandhi had to take the moral high ground to inspire western support otherwise, india would be just another country in the asia who is decolonizing from british rule. Secondly, Gandhi was the face of the movement & the INC (Indian National Congress) so he have to unite all the other classes & religions in india towards their common enemy britain. Religious & Class politics won’t help him like it helps today’s parties. So, he need to be on the moral highground and seem to be a Legitmate leader. Third, he always expected the struggle to be violent he even wanted that because he knew that’s the road to “Poorna Swaraj” but he cannot practice it because this will serve as a reason for the British to put him into a jail & random violent reactions like Chauri Chaura can’t get india independence, chaos will erupt & at best india could get a years long civil war with british. He was smart about it but, he shouldn’t have splitted india into 2, After all, After 1942 ww2 ended british empire weakend & they couldn’t afford to run a colony like India so they voluntarily gave up otherwise we would have been enslaved till 1991 just like the South Africans but that’s for another article.
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