“People have forgotten Gandhiji and have lost their capacity to fight against injustice,” said writer Fakir Mohammed Katapady on Sunday.
He was speaking at the Gandhi Smriti programme organised by the Udupi district unit of Karnataka Komu Sauharda Vedike (KKSV) here.
Mr. Katapady said although Mahatma Gandhi propagated non-violence as an important tool to get Independence, it was an irony that he became a victim of violence. Even now violence dominated over non-violence. Instead of Mahatma's “Hind Swaraj” (home rule), there was now “Himsa Swaraj” (rule of violence).
But the countries of West Asia, where non-violence was not so well-known, were now following it. This is evidenced by the “Jasmine Revolution” in Tunisia, where its ruler for 23 years, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, was forced to step down from presidency following protests which began in December 2010 and fled to Saudi Arabia on January 14 this year.
Even Egypt was seeing unprecedented non-violent protests against its President Hosni Mubarak, who had been in power for 30 years. It was the writers who had inspired protests in the countries of West Asia.
It was strange that the people in India remained silent in spite of massive corruption, galloping inflation and shameless behaviour of the Government at the Centre and in the State. It was necessary to have a non-violent struggle in the State and the country against corruption, Mr. Katapady said.
Speaking on “Hind Swaraj”, writer Pattabhirama Somayaji said that the book Hind Swaraj authored by Mahatma Gandhi was unlike his other works. He had written this book with a lot of emotion. The book had a conversational style. Although it was a conversation between the editor and reader, yet both were equals.
This had great significance for a country, where for hundreds of years some people had the exclusive privilege to speak, while others had to listen. But now there was hardly any conversation among people. The Mahatma had seen the dangers of ultra-nationalism, Prof. Somayaji said.
Vedike's district unit vice-president K. Phaniraj welcomed the gathering and delivered the introductory remarks. Taluk panchayat member Rahamatulla gave away prizes to winners on essay competitions.