Contemporary Assassins of Gandhi


Former Karnataka Chief Minister, H D Kumaraswamy’s remark on Gandhi is highly condemnable.  He is reported to have said that Gandhi would have turned corrupt in present-day politics or run away.  The remark reveals a shocking ignorance of the character and vision of the father of the nation.

Gandhi was not perfect.  “I am of the earth, earthy… I am prone to as many weaknesses as you are,” admitted Gandhi.  Like all human beings Gandhi had limitations and he was aware of them too.  He tried relentlessly to overcome those limitations or to keep them under check.  The limitations notwithstanding, Gandhi would not have become corrupt, nor would he have run away.  He was a fighter through and through.  He would fight the weaknesses within himself as well as the evils in the society. 

Kumaraswamy’s explanation is worse.  He thinks that the entire political system has become so corrupt now that it is difficult to build any political party without being corrupt.  That’s exactly what he told the presspersons in Hubli. 

What made Gandhi great was his vision.  It was a vision that rose above the situation.  It was a vision that transformed the situation.  The tragedy in India today is that there is no single leader with a vision that comes anywhere near Gandhi’s.  Instead of trying to rise above the corrupt system, today’s political leaders defend it and, worse, try to draw Gandhi down into the quagmire. 

While Kumaraswamy assassinated the spirit of Gandhi once again, many other leaders like Kapil Sibal admitted their lack of vision and consequent helplessness in dealing with the issue of corruption.

Kumaraswamy’s argument that it is difficult to build any political party without being corrupt is absolutely fallacious.  And Gandhi would have proved it with his life.  He and his party would have won every election were he alive today and contesting elections.  Without being corrupt. 

Can an individual win elections without all the strident propaganda we witness today?  Of course, if any leader really serves his constituency and its people while he is in power he will continue to win the elections even if he spends nothing for the campaign.  People appreciate the goodness in any person.  People are just waiting to see such goodness.  An Anna Hazare does not attract the kind of public support he received recently because of any propaganda.  It is the goodness that he embodies which wins the support.  Any political leader can get such public support without spending a single rupee. 

But how many politicians are or want to be good at heart?  How many of them are in politics for the purpose that politics envisages: service to citizens?

The answer is obvious.  So, Gandhi will continue to be assassinated in our country again and again.

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8 Responses to Contemporary Assassins of Gandhi

  1. aram says:

    Sir i think you are right…. but there is a fact which was in my mind while reading your blog, that is, crucification of the good…. it somehow feels that if there is a leader who rises above corruption then his peers and colleagues in other parties would have him departed from politics or from this world using their crooked ways. As a society a transformation is needed. As for gandhi, i had taken many blows, as soon as i came to india, my friends in school or later in college tagged gandhi to be a rapist or a selfish guy or similar view points. I think Gandhi’s image has been tarnished by people over time and I dont know what the next few generations will take of his teachings….. Your blog post has been a reading delight as always and exercised the gray cells as well 🙂


    • matheikal says:

      Exactly, Aram. It became fashionable in India to hurl stones at Gandhi. Certain political parties and organisations are responsible for it to a great extent. Ignorance of Gandhi is the other main reason. I wish those indulge in Gandhi-bashing had read at least one percent of his writings and tried to understand tha man behind those words!

  2. benny says:

    That is right. India needs leaders with vision. I entirely support your views on Gandhi.

  3. Raghuram Ekambaram says:

    matheikal, I wish you had not posted this. It unnecessarily airs what needs to be ignored at worst, or actively suppressed at best. You have, most unwittingly, given publicity to the barking of a dog. That besides, we must remember that Gandhi was a product of his times. Will there ever be another MKG, M L King Jr., Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, or Hitler, Stalin? We simply do not know and is there any point in asking questions or asserting answers like he would/would not have done this or that? I am not sure.

    As an aside, have you read or heard Anna Hazare’s name without the honorific GANDHIAN? It is sickening. Why should it matter that he is or is not a GANDHIAN? Does going on a fast entitle one to that honorific? We should, while being amazed at what MKG did and the tools he used, must start putting negative premium on the use of that name. The next GANDHIAN must be discounted very severely. We cannot ride the wave for eternity. have to reach the shore sometime or the other.

    Raghuram Ekambaram

    • matheikal says:

      No, Raghuram, I don’t agree with you on this. I think some people should keep reminding the others about what Gandhi really was. People are forgetting that. Worse, people are lapping up wrong notions propagated by certain vested interests. I’m only making a humble attempt to keep the real Gandhi alive somewhere, in some minds…

      But, you are right in the other aspect. Our times cannot create another Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr, etc. The heroes of our age have to be different. That’s where, perhaps, Anna Hazare fails – the lack of a vision that’s relevant today. I’m actually contemplating the next blog on CREATIVITY. I can only suggest ways and means, explain terms, do my job of ‘teaching’. I lack the creativity of a visionary. But I thought of suggesting it to anyone who may have it dormant in him/her. So the next blog will be on creativity.

      • Raghuram Ekambaram says:

        I actually agree with you about reminding people about Gandhi and what he did, but it should not be on the coattails (?) of a dog on the street. True, this post would catch many more flies than a new post on MKG, but still it would be better, I think.


        Raghuram Ekambaram

  4. dawnanddew says:

    Then Kumaraswamy’s comment throws a dubious light on his own person. Goodness is always strong. Evil wins, but is always met with accidents. It is the realisation of millions of people through the ages. HDK is certainly not shortlisted in the list of these millions.

    • matheikal says:

      Dawn, just a few moments back I ready in a psychology textbook that new vision is seldom appreciated by the society though we would like to think otherwise. Similarly goodness is appreciated only after it is destroyed!

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