Friday, February 24, 2017
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Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Some lesser-known facts on 'Ba'
Kasturba Mohandas Gandhi married Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi when she was only 13 years old and Gandhi was 14 years old. She fought along with Gandhi for civil rights and Indian independence against the British. She was born on April 11, 1869 and died on February 22, 1944.
- Kasturba Gandhi was born as Kastur Kapadia in the year 1869. Not much is known of her early life
- In May 1883, at the age of 13, in an arranged marriage, she married Mahatma Gandhi who was 14 years old at that time
- As been said by Gandhi "...for us marriage meant only wearing new clothes, eating sweets and playing with relatives."
- Kasturba was an absolute illiterate. Gandhi taught her the alphabets and how to read and write
- She could not learn much because she had too many domestic responsibilities. It was also revealed that she did not have much enthusiasm for education and so, was least interested in learning
- When Mahatma Gandhi left for London to study law, she remained in India for upbringing their newly born son Harilal
- She had three more sons with Mahatma Gandhi: Manilal Gandhi, Ramdas Gandhi, and Devdas Gandhi
- In the year 1906, Gandhi started practicing Brahmacharya and took the oath of celibacy and chastity. Kasturba supported her husband's decisions even though she did not support some of his ideas
- She worked closely with Gandhi and became a political activist, fighting for civil rights and Indian independence from the British
- From the year 1904 to 1914, she was active in the Phoenix Settlement near Durban, South Africa
- Kasturba encouraged women volunteers to take part in the Indian freedom struggle and even took Gandhi's position when he was in jail
- She was even arrested and sentenced to three months in jail for protesting against working conditions for Indians in South Africa
- In 1915, when Gandhi returned to India to support indigo planters, Kasturba accompanied him. She taught hygiene, discipline, health, reading, and writing
- In January 1944, Kasturba suffered two heart attacks, after which she was confined to her bed. She died on February 22, the same year.
Kasturba Gandhi, the larger than life shadow of Mahatma Gandhi
(April 11, 1869 - February 22, 1944)
Mohan Das Karamchand Gandhi's evolution from a lawyer, to becoming the face of India's non-violent struggle for independence as the Mahatma has been written about at great length. In this journey of a man who is regarded as the father of the nation, an integral companion was his wife, Kasturba Gandhi.
Kasturba Gandhi's name is often lost in the face of Gandhi's leadership but she was his pillar of support, the first individual who was a part of him like none other. If he could convince her to give up her notions of caste and untouchability, he could convince others of the same. She was perhaps the only person who could disagree with him and point out to him his mistakes. She was his companion, his wife, his caretaker and later in life his representative too.