28th August 2011
Was Gandhi un-Gandhian?
While debating Anna Hazare's violent assaults on ADULTS in his village (in any event no one is supposed to beat children with army belts, either), on FB, one defence (for Anna) provided to me was that Gandhi himself indulged in criminal acts. The example offered in this regard was of his alleged "exploitation" of women. I was given this link.
Apparently this book Gandhi: Naked Ambition provides insights into Gandhi's hidden life, which is only now beginning to surface. I find this whole thing very reprehensible, very un-Gandhian. Gandhi had clearly wildly off-track somewhere down the line. How in heavens name is it possible to justify such actions? Prima facie, there is evidence of his exploitation of young girls. The key immediate question I have, though, is did Gandhi break any law? Did he commit any crime?
Relationship (?) with a person possibly below 18?
Sushila Nayar, the attractive sister of Gandhi's secretary, also his personal physician, attended Gandhi from girlhood. She used to sleep and bathe with Gandhi. When challenged, he explained how he ensured decency was not offended. "While she is bathing I keep my eyes tightly shut," he said, "I do not know … whether she bathes naked or with her underwear on. I can tell from the sound that she uses soap."
Relationship (?) with an 18 year old
While in Bengal to see what comfort he could offer in times of inter-communal violence in the run-up to independence, Gandhi called for his 18-year-old grandniece Manu to join him – and sleep with him. "We both may be killed by the Muslims," he told her, "and must put our purity to the ultimate test, so that we know that we are offering the purest of sacrifices, and we should now both start sleeping naked."
This is a research post. Please provide information. I'll also keep adding information in due course, time permitting.