20May2019

Andaman Chronicle

The Daily Diary of the Islands

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Gandhiji and Make In India..!

This happened in San Francisco!

“Take a picture of me, next to the statue!” I shouted,pointing excitedly to a statue of Gandhiji.

“But you’ve got hundreds of his statues all over India,” said my American friend, “Why take one with him here?”

“Because, I’m proud to see him honouredhere in the USA!” I said simply.

Yes, it gave me immense pride! Similar statues of the Father of our Nation areall over the world, and many of them, not put up by Indian communities, but by locals, in honour of what he exported to the whole world: The idea and practice of Non-Violence!

If there’s one product that is Make in India, and has been used effectively the world over, it’s the one Gandhiji spun in the spinning wheel of his mind, right here in our country.

With non-violence he beat the victorious British who had just beaten the mighty Germans!

With non-violence, he made the fierce Winston Churchill tremble as he disembarked in England wearing nothing but a homespun loin cloth.

What a product!

Today if the African-American is equal in his country, it’s because Martin Luther King, imported this wonderful export from India, and put it to good use.

It’s a product that no one needs to sell, that no one needs to hop from one country to another peddling and hugging world leaders to buy. And yet, today, in his very land, we have men and women who dare honour the very assassin who killed the greatest man our country has ever known.

We have reached a point, when the very product which has won us renown, is being dismantled and put away, and instead, a new one called violence is being exalted!

The British were cruel masters, but not once did hate or anger temper Gandhiji’s talks. Today, such talk is in every WhatsApp group, political speech or email, incited, encouraged and emboldened by present political leaders.

I can hear voices the world over asking, “Is this true? Can it really be happening in your country?”

“Yes, it’s true, as the murderer of a Man of Peace is made a hero!”

I stand next to that statue in San Francisco and I hear crowds shouting from all around the world, by nations that have benefitted from our desi, homegrown, make in India product “There is no need,” they shout, “for bear hugs, and your leader spending your nation’s time and money on visits to our leaders. Just start respecting again the man who gave you, the best ‘Make in India’ product, and we around the world will respect you..!” 

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  • Written by Denis Giles
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