Reflections on meaning of Mahatma Gandhi's Martyrdom on Martyrs' Day
By Satya Narayan Sahu | PUBLISHED: 30, Jan 2017, 11:19 am IST | UPDATED: 01, Feb 2017, 15:42 pm IST
On this day in 1948 Mahatma Gandhi fell to three billets of an assassin. What was the meaning of that glorious death? The real meaning of that death was that he came on the way of three billets of hatred and stopped them in their trajectory. And in doing so he laid down his life.
He always wanted to die in that manner. In early 1930s when Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi lost his life while preventing communal riots in Kanpur Gandhiji wrote an article as to how he would like to die.
He wrote that one assassin would come and box him, the other would come and Club him and the third would hit hard and knife him; and in the midst of all such attacks if he would remain non-violent and prevent others not to come on the way of assassins and eventually if he would die with no rancour and ill will against those assassins then history would record that Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi was truly non-violent.
Gandhiji died a glorious death and the Hey Ram he uttered after he received the billets testified to his tuning to divinity and the purity of his heart free from ill will.
Just a few days before his assassination he famously wrote "It would be enough for me if I die with non-violence in heart and Ram in my lips". That was indeed a glorious death while pursuing the noble goal of establishing a non-violent social and economic order in face of terrible violence.
# The author Mr Satya Narayan Sahu was OSD and Press Secretary to the late President of India Shri K.R. Narayanan and served as Director in the Prime Minister's Office. He is currently Joint Secretary in the Rajya Sabha Secretariat. The views expressed by the author are personal and not that of Rajya Sabha Secretariat.