Monday, January 27, 2014

Martyrs' Day Programme - 30th January 2014

Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, Mumbai
&
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya
has organised programme for Martyrs' Day
to mark 66th Death Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi
on Thursday, January 30, 2014
at Mani Bhavan, 19 Laburnum Road, Gamdevi, Mumbai - 400 007
Programmes:
Time
Name
Prayer
7 .30 a.m.
Spinning
 
8.00 to 9.00 a.m.
1. Smt. Shoma Sen

2. Smt. Sonali Borkar teacher,
    Balmohan Vidya Mandir, Dadar

3.. Balmohan Vidya Mandir,dadar
 
4. Chikitsak Samuh Shirolkar High school, Girgaon
Prayer
9.30 to 10.00 a.m.
Smt. Madhavi Nanal & Group
Hindu  prayer
10.00 to 10.30 a.m.
Shri Bardoliwala
Zoroastrian prayer & Bhajans
10.30 to 11.00 a.m.
Mr.Soloman Charikar
OIT (India)
Jewish  prayer
11.00 to 11.30 a.m.
Shri. Swaranjeet
Sikh prayer
11.30 to 12.00 noon
Mr. Khan Mahmood .Ali
Albarkaat Malik Moh. Eng. H school .Kurla(w)
Muslim prayer
12.00 to 12.30 p.m.
Rev. Sanjay Salvi
Christian prayer
12.30 to 1.00 p.m.
Shri. Somnath Parab & Party
Bhajan
1.00 to 1.30 p.m.
Smt. Meera Agharkar
Bhajan
1.30 to 2.00 p.m.
Smt. Geeta Yennamadi
Saraswati Vrindgan Mandal
Bhajan
2.00 to 2.30 p.m.
Smt.  Neepa
Jain Prayer

----------------
Please join us and pay Tribute to Father of the Nation.
 
Dr. Usha Thakker
President
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya, Mumbai.
Smt. Usha Gokani
Chairman
Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, Mumbai.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Martyrs' Day programme 30th January 2013

Gandhi Smarak Nidhi,  Mumbai
&
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya
has organised programme for Martyrs' Day
              to mark 65th  Death Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi
on  Wednesday , 30th January , 2013

at Mani Bhavan, 19 Laburnum Road, Gamdevi, Mumbai - 400 007

Programme:


7.30 - 8.00 a.m.
Mass Spinning

8.00 - 9.00 a.m.
Prayers & Bhajans by:


Smt. Madhavi Nanal , renowned singer from Gwalior Gharana.



Shri Hiren Dave, Teacher, Happy Home School  for Blind, Worli.

Shri Yogesh Gagani , Teacher , Green Lawns School Breach Candy.

Students from Happy Home school for Blind, Worli.







9.30 a.m. to  2:00 p.m.
Sarva Dharma Prarthna - Prayers from all the religions.






You are invited to please join us to pay tributes to Mahatma Gandhi.



Shri Vasant Pradhan
President
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya, Mumbai.
Srimati Usha Gokani
President
Gandhi Smarak Nidhi,
Mumbai.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man’s injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then indeed is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man’s superior.
- M.K. Gandhi , Young India, 10-4-1930

Monday, December 10, 2012

Trusteeship As a Moral Foundation for Business



Trusteeship As a Moral
Foundation for  Business

C. GOPINATH

When corporate scandals  break out, a review of  corporate governance practices follows and fresh regulation is introduced. However, the public debate on  the standards of acceptable corporate behavior appears devoid of moral expectations. Our corporations should not only  be  legal  and economic beings but moral ones too.  Gandhi’s concept of “trusteeship” can serve as a philosophical foundation for businesses and provide requisite moral guidance.





Wednesday, September 5, 2012


" People say that the days of big public meetings, processions and
speeches are past, that the time has come to work while keeping the
mouth shut. But the organizers of conferences and public meetings
are always anxious to make great shows of them. In their zeal, many
times they forget the truth and practise deception on the innocent
public while making preparations for conferences. A notice about
some conference says:

It is a matter of great pleasure that the conference is going to take place
in a big way. Important leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, the Ali Brothers,
Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Dr. Kitchlew, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Devdas
Gandhi, Shankerlal Banker, Rajagopalachari, Seth Jamnalal Bajaj, Maulana
A. Jafar Khan, Shrimati Gandhi, Bi Amma Sahiba, Tapasvi Sunderlal,
Makhanlal Chaturvedi , Shrimati Subhadra Kumari, etc., are expected to come.

It is possible that the reception committee has sent invitations to
these leaders. But till replies have been received from them saying that
they will try to come, it is not true to say that they are expected to
come. However commendable the intention may be, it is improper to
mislead people. Once or twice people may be deceived, but very soon
the workers lose their prestige as well as the I trust of the people.
Abraham Lincoln has rightly said: ‘You can fool all the people some
of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool
all the people all the time.”

- M.K.Gandhi , Hindi Navajivan, 1-6-1924

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Responsible Journalism


 I have taken up journalism not for its sake but merely as an aid to what I have conceived to be my mission in life. My mission is to teach by example and precept under severe restraint the use of the matchless weapon of satyagraha which is direct corollary of non-violence and truth. I am anxious, indeed I am impatient, to demonstrate that there is no remedy for the many ills of life save that of non-violence. It is a solvent strong enough to melt the stoniest heart. To be true to my faith, therefore, I may not write in anger or malice. I may not write idly. I may not write merely to excite passion. The reader can have no idea of the restraint I have to exercise from week to week in the choice of topics and my vocabulary. It is a training for me. It enables me to peep into myself and make discoveries of my weaknesses. Often my vanity dictates a smart expression or my anger a harsh adjective. It is a terrible ordeal but a fine exercise to remove these weeds.
-  M.K.Gandhi,  Young India, 2-7-1925

Friday, August 17, 2012


Invitation to the lecture on
'Mahatma Gandhi's Philosophy Today : Nonviolence  and Transforming Our Lives and the World'
by Prof. Douglas Allen*

on
23rd August, 2012 at 3.00 p.m. 
at Mani Bhavan, 19 Laburnum Road, Gamdevi, Mumbai 400007.


*Prof. Allen is Professor of Philosophy, University of Maine, Orono, Maine, USA. His most recent books are Myth and Religion in Mircea Eliade, Comparative Philosophy and Religion in Times of Terror and The Philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi for Twenty-First Century.  Prof. Allen is in India on a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research  Fellowship at Mani Bhavan to do research on 'Mahatma Gandhi and Violence, Terrorism and the Contemporary World.'
***

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Rules for personal cleanliness – M.K.Gandhi 

       Indian Opinion, 2-2-1907 [Gujarati]



1. Avoid, as far as possible, blowing your nose or spitting on
swept or paved walks or in the presence of others.
Both these things should be done into a spittoon while at home, and into a handkerchief while out, and, as far as possible, in privacy.

2. One should not belch, hiccup, break wind, or scratch oneself
in the presence of others.
These [maxims] are useful for correct social behaviour. By
practice one can learn to check one’s instinct to do any of these
things.

3. If you want to cough, do so holding your handkerchief
against the mouth.
If one’s spittle gets blown on to others, it annoys them and if
one has any disease, the spittle carries it to them.

4. Even after a bath, in many men, some dirt remains in the ears
or under the nails. It is necessary to pare one’s nails and keep them as well as the ears clean.

5. Those who do not grow a regular beard should, if necessary,
shave every day. An unshaven face is a sign of laziness or stinginess.

6. One should not let mucus accumulate in the corners of the
eyes. One who allows this to happen is considered slothful and a
sleepyhead.

7. Every act of cleaning the body should be done in privacy.

8. The turban or cap and the shoes should be clean. The life of
the shoes is prolonged by cleaning and polishing.

9. Those who chew betel-leaf and nut should do so at fixed
hours, as with other kinds of food so as to avoid giving the impression that we are eating all the time. Those who chew tobacco have a lot to think about. They disfigure every spot by spitting. Addicts to tobacco, as the Gujarati proverb goes, spoil the corner of the house where they chew tobacco, the whole house if they smoke and their clothes if they take snuff.

-          Indian Opinion, 2-2-1907 [Gujarati]

Monday, June 18, 2012

Three days 32nd Annual Naturopathy Camp of Akhil Bhartiya Prakratik Chikitsa Parishad, Rajghat was concluded  on 17th June. Chairman of ABPCP Renowned Gandhian and Freedom Fighter Ex MP Sh Keyur Bhushan Ji had inaugurated the Funtion on 15th June with the ex Dy. Chief Minister Haryana Mr. Chandra Bhan.
Akhil Bhartiya Prakratik Chikitsa Parishad is a pioneer institute of Gandhian Philosophy. Out of 21 Dream Project work of Rastrapita Mahatma Gandhi, one of them is Naturopathy and RAM NAM Chikitsa. Akhil Bhartiya Prakritik Chikitsa Parishad is spreading of simplicity and divine life style in Hindusthan. web site is http://www.abpcp.com/

Friday, May 11, 2012



"  What I did was a very ordinary thing. I declared that the British could not
order me around in my own country. "  - M.K.Gandhi.

From the book  A Week With Gandhi by Louis Fischer

Monday, April 9, 2012

National Week Programme






Events
National Week Programme
Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, Mumbai
&
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya
has organized programmes for the National Week
from April 06, 2012 to April 13, 2012
at Mani Bhavan, 19 Laburnum Road, Gamdevi, Mumbai - 400 007

 April 09, 2012
4.00 p.m.
Book release function "My Reminiscences of fifty years in Mani Bhavan" written by Smt. Usha Trivedi
 April 10, 2012
3.00 p.m.
Recitation of Ashram Bhajans by Smt. Madhavi Nanal

All are Cordially invited to attend the programmes.

Shri. Vasant Pradhan                               Smt. Usha Gokani
   
President                                            President
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya         Gandhi Smarak Nidhi, Mumbai

http://www.gandhi-manibhavan.org/activities/c_news_36.htm

Monday, March 12, 2012

Gandhiji's thoughts on women

" Woman is the companion of man, gifted with equal mental capacities. She has the right to participate in the very minutest detail in the activities of man and she has an equal right of freedom and liberty with him. She is entitled to a supreme place in her own sphere of activity as man is in his. "



- Excerpts from Gandhiji's speech at Bhagini Samaj, (Bombay) Mumbai, February 20, 1918.



Monday, January 23, 2012

Martyrs' Day Programme 2012 at Mani Bhavan

 Gandhi Smarak Nidhi,  Mumbai
&
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya
has organised programme for Martyrs' Day
              to mark 64th  Death Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi)
on  Monday , January 30th, 2012

at Mani Bhavan, 19 Laburnum Road, Gamdevi, Mumbai - 400 007
Programme:

7.30 - 8.00 a.m.
Mass Spinning

8.00 - 9.00 a.m.
Prayers & Bhajans by:


Smt.Gita Yannamandi, Saraswati Vrindagaan Mandal, Gamdevi.


Shrimati Sonali Borkar

Shri Sunil Varankar

J.B.Vachcha High School, Dadar







9.00 a.m. to  2:00 p.m.
Sarva Dharma Prarthna






You are invited to please join us to pay tributes to Mahatma Gandhi.



Shri Vasant Pradhan
President
Mani Bhavan Gandhi Sangrahalaya, Mumbai.
Srimati Usha Gokani
President
Gandhi Smarak Nidhi,
Mumbai.



Friday, January 13, 2012

Gandhiji's articles suffer from condensation


 " I own that often my articles suffer from condensation. They are made to yield a meaning I had never intended. The Ajmer illustration quoted by my correspondent is clinching. This matter of copy-right has been often brought before me. But I have not the heart to copyright my articles. I know that there is a financial loss. But as Harijan is not published for profit I am content so long as there is no deficit. I must believe that in the end my self-denial must serve the cause of truth. "
- M.K.Gandhi
Harijan, 15-6-1940.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Non-violent nationalism


" Violent nationalism, otherwise known as imperialism, is the curse. Non-violent nationalism is a necessary condition of corporate or civilized life ." - M.K. Gandhi

Young India, 27-11-1924.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Misquotes of Gandhiji

Misquotes that Bapu is forced to wear

Times Of India , Ahmedabad
 
AHMEDABAD: "Be the change you want to see in the world," "There is enough wealth in the world to satisfy everyone's needs, but there is not enough to satisfy everyone's greed," "Customer is God,"... And, the list of what are said to be some of Mahatma Gandhi's most quotable quotes is much longer.
However, those exchanging greeting cards, key chains and posters with these quotes printed on them would be disappointed to know that Mahatma never uttered these words.
Scholars who have been pouring over more than 50,000 pages of the Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (CWMG) have not found any references to these quotes in these voluminous works. And, it is none other than Gandhiji's great grandson Tushar Gandhi, who endorses their stand and calls for a serious need to clear any aberrations in Bapu's work and sayings.
"The 'Be the change...' quote is not Gandhiji's. It can be considered a paraphrase of what he may have said," said Tushar Gandhi. " Customer is an important visitor..." is again not Bapu's quote, but a highly condensed portion of a speech that he made at an inaugural function of a Khadi outlet.
The CWMG is a collection of Bapu's personal correspondences, articles that he wrote for journals and newspapers, speeches, interviews, letters to editors and even telegrams in his lifetime prepared in 98 volumes since from July 4, 1888. The only reference that one finds to the "Be the change..." quote are interviews of Bapu's grandson Arun Gandhi by Carmella B'Hahn and Michel W. Potts in early 2000. Arun Gandhi indirectly quoted Gandhiji.
In an article that appeared in the Harijan in 1940 Mahatma Gandhi wrote, "I own that often my articles suffer from condensation. They are made to yield a meaning I had never intended. . ." Mahatma Gandhi had strong reservations of anyone modifying his language without his prior permission.
The quote, 'There is enough wealth in the world to satisfy everyone's needs, ...' is actually credited to an American pastor of Swiss origin Frank Buckman, founder of the Moral Rearmament movement. The famous quote 'Customer is an important visitor...' which appears on every traders and businessman's desk is a highly condensed paraphrase of one of Bapu's speech. Bapu never said "Western civilization is a good idea....". It is not mentioned in his autobiography or the CWMG.
The only persons authorized to write or modify what Gandhiji wrote when he was alive were his two personal assistants, Mahadev Desai and Pyarelal Nayar. Their memoirs and diaries are considered authentic sources of Bapu's quotes apart from CWMG and the Bapu's autobiography.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Significance of Indian Opinion


Indian Opinion newspaper banner
The Significance of Indian Opinion by Uma Dhupelia-Mesthrie

Department of History, University of the Western Cape
Address to Conference on the Alternate Media to Commemorate the Centenary of the Founding of Indian Opinion, 4 June 2003, Durban
On 4 June 1903 a very tired but fired up young man worked till 3am in the morning in the central business district of Durban. He then walked to his home in Sydenham as the last tramcar had long departed. On 5 June again he worked till 11pm - there was an urgency with which he worked. His goal was to get a new newspaper before the public. The first issue of Indian Opinion was dated 4 June but it was only on 6 June that it could be released. The young man was relieved but he could not relax. He had the next issue to think about and it was due in five days time. He wrote `I am now anxious about the second number. With a small staff, and lack of materials - types, etc., and facilities, we have to keep the paper up to the mark!'
This man was M.H. Nazar, a secretary of the Natal Indian Congress. His letters for this early period indicate that there were two other key individuals involved in the production of this new journal. Madanjit Viyavaharik, the owner of the International Printing Press and Mohandas Gandhi, the Johannesburg lawyer. Nazar and Madanjit saw to the practicalities of producing the newspaper - this was no mean task for the paper was to be produced in four languages - English, Hindi, Gujerati and Tamil. The translation of the articles was difficult as individuals proficient in two languages were required. Nazar would report `The translators are not particularly clever, and they will not work at day time'. Some translations were simply `shocking'. Then there was a shortage of types. Virji Damodar Mehta (who would one day found his own printing press, Universal Printing Press) asked Nazar not to use too many of the Gujerati letter `a'. The editor himself did not know Tamil and had to explain the spirit of articles to translators whose English was not too good. Madanjit in the meanwhile had been running around getting the licence, advertisers and subscribers. The first issue which was some two months in the planning was finally out.
I start deliberately with Nazar, the first editor, and Madanjit the actual owner, to illustrate the point that there were many dedicated workers who made Indian Opinion a possibility. It was Nazar, in fact, who would set a high standard for those who would succeed him in the editor's chair. There was no question of taking money for his work, it was all for a `cause'. However there is no doubt that the main figure in the production of the paper was the thirty-four year old lawyer whose office was based in Rissik Street in Johannesburg. Nazar would suggest various lead articles but lest Gandhi should not understand he clarified the position. He expected these to be written by Gandhi. Over the years, Gandhi would direct the policy of Indian Opinion from Johannesburg, write articles, give direction and above all divert his earnings from his prospering practice to help sustain the paper. And over the years there were many dedicated workers and editors.
My task this evening is to explain what is the significance of this journal which by its second year had 887 subscribers. Over its entire 58 years existence its subscribers averaged at about 2000. The highest number in any one year was 3500. Compare this with the Guardian which in the 1930s began with a circulation of 1000 but grew rapidly over the years to top 50 000 by the mid-1940s. When Indian Opinion was reaching its dying days in 1961, the Guardian now published as New Age had a circulation of 20 000. The significance of Indian Opinion lies not in its size (which may be explained only partly in terms of the size of the Indian population) but in its content.
Indian Opinion was also not the first Indian newspaper in Natal. It had been preceded by a short-lived Indian World in 1898 and in May 1901 P.S Aiyar a Tamil journalist began a Tamil-English weekly Colonial Indian News. Aiyar's ventures reflected the precariousness of such undertakings as this too lasted for just a few years. Africans in colonial Natal had also been publishing newspapers for some time. There had been Inkanyiso yase Natal, Ipepa lo Hlanga and in April 1903 John Dube began his Ilanga lase Natal. In the eastern Cape where black journalism had an even longer history there was Imvo Zabantsundu run by John Tengo Jabavu and the more radical paper Izwi Labantu published by Walter Rubusana and Alan Soga from East London. Indian Opinion was launched at a time when just after the South African War all blacks felt disappointed with British rule and were concerned about the failure of the new order to bring about improvements in their political, social and economic status. The years after the war were marked by a proliferation of papers. Sol Plaatje . one of our most talented elites of the time began a Tswana-English weekly that served the northern Cape and Free State. Later, in 1909, in Cape Town Dr Abduraham would start the APO. These were just a few of the many papers emerging. The important point I would like to make is that Gandhi belongs to this generation of rising black journalists and editors who were all committed to improving the position of black people especially at a time when whites were moving towards forming a Union of South Africa within which blacks had such limited rights. Indian Opinion marked Gandhi's apprenticeship as a journalist. In India he would go on to publishing many other journals, Young India, Navajivan, Harijan and his experience with Indian Opinion would prove crucial.
Indian Opinion began its life by adopting a very moderate tone. The editor proclaimed `we have unfailing faith in British justice' . It was by `well-sustained continuous and temperate constitutional effort that Indians would seek redress'. That is how the paper began and in colonial Natal there was reason to be cautious. The owners of Ipepa lo Hlanga chose to close down after it offended the Natal government with an article urging people Vukani Bantu! Rise Up you people'. For the time being Gandhi was anxious not to offend white officialdom but to secure their support to improve the position of Indians. The pages of Indian Opinion provide a valuable historical record of the disabilities that Indians suffered under. It also provides an invaluable record of the life of the political life of the Indian community. It represents an alternate voice to that of newspapers such as the Natal Mercury which were often hostile to Indian interests. Soon Gandhi would move from political petitioning to active resistance and his paper changed too.
One significant moment in the paper's history came in 1904 when Gandhi relocated it to a one hundred acre farm named Phoenix just 24 kms from Durban. This reflected the influence of Leo Tolstoy and John Ruskin on Gandhi. Gandhi drew on Tolstoy's distaste for city life, his praise of agricultural labour and his renunciation of wealth. From Ruskin he drew the idea that all labour whether that of the professional or the manual labourer was equal but also that `the life of a tiller of the soil and the handicraftsman, is the life worth living.' At Phoenix the press workers were governed by a new work ethic - they would all have a share in the land, in the profits if there were any, they would grow crops to sustain themselves and they would work jointly to produce Indian Opinion. Thus the history of Indian Opinion becomes intertwined with Phoenix, Gandhi's first communal settlement. While at Phoenix the rhythm of life was dictated by the production of the paper, in India it was the spinning wheel which was the centre of ashram activity.
Indian Opinion played a very significant role in the early years of the twentieth century by fostering the idea of one united Indian community and a national identity. This was no mean task for Indians were divided by religion, caste, class, and even Indian regional affiliations. `we are not, and ought not to be, Tamils or Calcutta men, Mohammedans or Hindus, Brahmins or Banyas, but simply and solely British Indians'. Indian Opinion especially highlighted the poor conditions under which indentured labourers worked. Editorials asked `Is all well on the Estates', cases of harsh treatment by employers were publicised and the astoundingly high rate of suicide was pointed out. A campaign to end the system was launched and editor Henry Polak, a friend of Gandhi's went to India to mobilise support. Indian Opinion was a means of bringing news about Indians in the colonies before the public in India.
Indian Opinion and political activism on the part of its editors became an established tradition. This is what would, throughout the 20th century distinguish Indian Opinion from other newspapers that would arrive on the scene during the 20th century. All but one of its editors spent some time in jail. This tradition began during the satyagraha campaign between 1906 and 1913 which began because of attempts to impose passes on Indians in the Transvaal. The newspaper came into its own. In 1904 its aims had simply been to educate whites in South Africa about Indian needs and wants. From 1906 onwards it became a vehicle for challenging state laws and urging defiance of these when these were clearly unjust. It is this that elevates this tiny newspaper produced from a farm to one of world significance for it became linked with Gandhi's transformation to a mass movement leader and his philosophy of satyagraha which can be interpreted as active non-violent resistance. The law was translated into Gujerati, readers were urged to defy the law, from Johannesburg Gandhi wrote a regular Johannesburg Letter explaining to anxious Indians what steps they should take and what the reaction of the authorities would be. Inspirational stories of resistance were published such as the life of Socrates who chose death rather than bow to the Athenian officials. The paper played a fundamental role on defeating the registration drive of officials. Its pages paid tribute to local resisters and Brian Gabriel, one of Natal's earliest Indian photographers, provided visual coverage. Gandhi who by 1909 had spent 177 days in jail - and there would be more to come - extolled the virtues of prison life, a life of poverty, and urged readers not to pursue wealth at a time when there was higher moral calling.
According to Gandhi `Satyagraha would have been impossible without Indian Opinion'. Gandhi recalled `the paper generally reached Johannesburg on Sunday morning. I know of many, whose first occupation after they received the paper would be to read the Gujerati section through from beginning to end. One of the company would read it, and the rest would surround him and listen. ' So as we acknowledge the importance of satyagraha as a weapon that evolved on South African soil, that inspired many anti-colonial, anti-imperial, anti-apartheid movements and movements in a quest for justice, a weapon that would ultimately bring the mighty British Empire to its heels in India, so we should acknowledge Indian Opinion. It was a key mobilising device. Gandhi also had a bigger campaign in mind - he had his eyes on India and in the pages of Indian Opinion he published his book Hind Swaraj which set out his vision for an independent India. Indian Opinion faced its first banning order - these issues were prohibited in India.
Although Indian Opinion began by advocating Indian rights it also focussed on the disabilities of other blacks in South Africa - the devastating provisions of the Land Act of 1913, the pass struggles of Africans were publicised and African achievements too were celebrated. In the 1950s especially under the editorship of Manilal Gandhi, Gandhi's second son, the newspaper became more focussed on human rights rather than the rights of Indians only. It became a central medium for disseminating the meaning of satyagraha and of propagating Gandhism. In a significant move in 1957 the English section of IO was renamed Opinion. In the words of Sushila Gandhi who took on the editorship after Manilal's death, the name change was to reflect the "Oneness of Man", the belief in `a new sense of nationhood &http://www.sahistory.org.za/pages/artsmediaculture/arts/media/#8230; [that] transcends cultural and racial barriers and holds before all the ideal of a unified nation whose various people shall be bound together by their love of their country and their belief in the ideals on which their freedom should be founded. Gandhi she asserted belonged to not just "India and Indians only &http://www.sahistory.org.za/pages/artsmediaculture/arts/media/#8230; the greatest teachers of humanity do not belong to their tribes or national groups they belong to humanity'. And this is what we commemorate today that great belief in fundamental human rights and the constant striving and vigilance to ensure its attainment.
Gandhi left behind a tough legacy for his successors at Indian Opinion to follow. This was not a commercial undertaking, it was a paper for political, social and moral education. It would be very remiss of me to not pay tribute to those who helped Gandhi shape his legacy in those early years and those who continued that legacy for several decades thereafter. There were the trustees of Phoenix Settlement and all those who on a regular basis who saved Indian Opinion from its dire financial straits. These names would be too numerous to mention. We need to recognise though in a roll call of honour at least the family of Parsee Rustomjee. There were many editors - Nazar, Hebert Kitchin, Henry Polak, Albert West, Manilal Gandhi who was the paper's longest serving editor for 36 years and Sushila Gandhi. There were many contributors, assistants and acting editors too - Gandhi's nephews, Chhaganlal and Maganlal Gandhi, Lewis Walter Ritch, Albert Christopher, Pragji Desai, Surendra Medh, Shantilal Gandhi, P.R. Pather, Jordan Ngubane, Christopher Gell, Homer Jack, Arun Gandhi, Sita Gandhi-Dhupelia, Ranjith Nowbath , Pat Poovalingam and Natoo Babenia. When Indian Opinion published its last issue on 4 August 1961, Alpha Ngcobo had served for 41 years after coming to the press as a young man of twenty years. Perumalsamy Rajoo served for 27 years, D. Gangabissoon sixteen , S. Ramdhar and R. Baijnath thirteen years each. They made up the small staff that daily gathered in the International Printing Press.
Sushila Gandhi above all ended a 34 year old link with the paper. She had come as a young bride of 20 years in 1927 and began in the press by composing types - each letter had to be handset - for over 58 years advances in printing technology were deliberately avoided. Time stood still and manual labour was favoured over machines. Sushila soon progressed to writing and editing the Gujerati sections and then took over after her husband's death. A photograph shows a lone woman in the printing press working amongst the handful of men. Indian Opinion provided a place where women could work as equals and be freed of cultural and traditional restraints and that was Gandhi's doing and teaching. And that too is what we celebrate and commemorate today. I thank you.
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