Mandela and the Mahatma - The Hindu
With Nelson Mandela's illness and President Obama's recent South Africa on Mandela was so immeasurable that when Rajmohan met South. In his autobiography, Nelson Mandela spoke at length on the the Mandela's devotion to Gandhi, hardly ever do we hear about the They would meet at Ismail's apartment frequently to engage in stimulating discussions. Both Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi were complex in and significantly, after meeting and becoming close to Walter Sisulu.
Both walked that long road to freedom. Their unwavering commitment to nationalism was not only rooted in freedom; it also aspired towards freedom.
Mandela Took Inspiration from Gandhi - dayline.info
Both discovered that after climbing a great hill, one only finds many more to climb. They had little time to rest and look back on the distance they had travelled. Both Mandela and the Mahatma believed freedom was not pushed from behind by a blind force but that it was actively drawn by a vision.
In this respect, as in many other ways, the convergence of the Indian and South African freedom struggles is real and striking. Racial prejudice characterised British India before independence as it marred colonial rule in South Africa.
Gandhi entered the freedom struggle without really comprehending the sheer scale of racial discrimination in India. When he did, however, he did not allow himself to be rushed into reaction. The Mahatma patiently used every opportunity he got to defy colonial power, to highlight its illegitimate rule, and managed to overcome the apparently unassailable might of British rule. He organised an active militant wing of the African National Congress — the Spear of the Nation — to sabotage government installations without causing injury to people.
He could do so because he was a rational pragmatist. Inclusion Both Gandhi and Nelson Mandela are entitled to our affection and respect for more than one reason. They eschewed violence against the person and did not allow social antagonisms to get out of hand. They felt the world was sick unto death of blood-spilling, but that it was, after all, seeing a way out. At the same time, they were not pacifists in the true sense of the word.
File:Mahatma Gandhi meets Nelson Mandela - geograph.org.uk - 214610.jpg
They maintained the evils of capitulation outweighed the evils of war. Needless to say, their ideals are relevant in this day and age, when the advantages of non-violent means over the use of force are manifest. Gandhi and Mandela also demonstrated to the world they could help build inclusive societies, in which all Indians and South Africans would have a stake and whose strength, they argued, was a guarantee against disunity, backwardness and the exploitation of the poor by the elites.
He founded the weekly Indian Opinion in Inhe set up an ashram in Phoenix in Durban, in the midst of Africans and close to the industrial school of John Langalibalele Dube — the first president of the African National Congress. But his real concern was serving the Indian community in South Africa. He felt that Indians would be respected if they showed that they were loyal subjects of the British Empire.
He had led an Indian ambulance corps of about a thousand volunteers for nearly six weeks during the Anglo-Boer War. Inhe committed a blunder which proved to be a blessing.
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During the military operations of the Natal militia against chief Bambata and his followers — who refused to pay a new poll tax — he organised a small stretcher-bearer corps of about 20 Indians.
Gandhi did not understand the nature or scope of the rebellion. The corps, which served for a little over a month, was asked to take care of the wounded and whipped Africans since no white would treat them. Seeing the brutality of the whites against the Africans was a traumatic experience for Gandhi. Nelson Mandela wrote in an article in Time magazine on December 31, He determined on that battlefield to wrest himself of all material attachments and devote himself completely and totally to eliminating violence and serving humanity.
Wikimedia Commons Soon after he returned to Johannesburg, the Transvaal government gazetted a humiliating ordinance against the Asiatics. Gandhi recognised that making petitions and deputations to the racist rulers were of no avail unless there was force behind them.
He decided to defy the law and mobilised the Indian community to court imprisonment. He discovered non-violent resistance satyagraha which was, in essence, pitting the power of the people against guns. This non-violent resistance forced the racist white government of South Africa to concede the main demands of the struggle.
During the course of the struggle, Gandhi widened his horizon and publicly supported African rights. He declared in an address to the YMCA in That, of course, does not prove their right to it. A large number even from among them believe that they will have to fight again to defend their occupation. But we shall say no more about this. One will reap as one sows. Wikimedia He commended the efforts of John Tengo Jabavu to raise the enormous sum of 50, pounds from Africans for establishing a college for Africans.
If the natives of South Africa, with all their financial disabilities and social disadvantages, are capable of putting forth this local effort, is it not incumbent upon the British Indian community to take the lesson to heart, and press forward the matter of educational facilities with far greater energy and enthusiasm than have been used hitherto?
Rubusana on being elected to the Cape Provincial Council and commented: Rubusana can sit in the Provincial Council but not in the Union Parliament is a glaring anomaly which must disappear if South Africans are to become a real nation in the near future.
Hermann Kallenbach, an associate of Gandhi, spoke of their identification with Africans in an interview in June A black man may not use a hotel lift and bathroom, so both of us gladly left the use of both. A black man may not eat in the common dining room [so] I said I would not go there myself and we had our food in our rooms.
Inthere were discussions on the formation of a national body to defend African rights. Pixley ka Isaka Seme, who initiated the proposal, visited Gandhi at the Tolstoy Farm for consultation.
He never sought to impose his leadership over the African people, the sons of the soil, but presented them with the example of satyagraha as a means of deliverance from oppression. He kept up his interest in South Africa and often wrote about the oppression of the Africans.
He said in a speech at Oxford on October 24, The mighty English look quite pygmies before the mighty races of Africa. They are noble savages after all, you will say. They are certainly noble, but no savages and in the course of a few years the Western nations may cease to find in Africa a dumping ground for their wares.
Tema — a member of the ANC — on January 1,he said: You, on the other hand, are the sons of the soil who are being robbed of your inheritance. You are bound to resist that. Yours is a far bigger issue. It ought not to be mixed up with that of the Indian. This does not preclude the establishment of the friendliest relations between the two races. The Indians can cooperate with you in a number of ways. They can help you by always acting on the square towards you. On India rests the burden of pointing the way to all the exploited races.
In Mayhe told Y. Under the leadership of Jawaharlal Nehru, India espoused the cause of freedom in the United Nations and the Commonwealth, in sports bodies and other forums. India imposed sanctions against South Africa in and earned the hostility of the western powers. They inspire us today in our efforts of reconciliation and nation building. His strategy of noncooperation, his assertion that we can be dominated only if we cooperate with our dominators and his nonviolent resistance inspired anticolonial and antiracist movements internationally.