ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Learning from Gandhi

It was enlightening to read the article “Gandhi before Gandhi: Two Little Prehistories of the Great Soul” (EPW, 26 July 2014) by Sumanyu Satpathy. It throws light on little-known aspects of the Gandhian philosophy and his ideas related to charkha, khadi and swadeshi.

It is thought-provoking to know about Chandrasekhar Mahapatra who, totally unaware of “modern scientific” methods of the West, arrived at scientific conclusions written in Sanskrit. Surprisingly, Rabindranath Tagore was against the Swadeshi Movement initiated by Gandhi, whereas Fakir Mohan Senapati (Odia litterateur) understood the essence of swadeshi before Gandhi and gave a vivid illustration of the social reality from the perspectives of the poor with ingenuity and empathy (p 176).

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