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Essay, Paragraph or Speech on “Relevance of Gandhi Today” Complete Essay, Speech for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Relevance of Gandhi Today

In this materialistic age, where economics has become all-important and nuclear power a must, the post-Independence generation has begun to consider Gandhi and his principles totally irrelevant in the present context. They think that the Mahatma belonged to a bygone era and his ideas have become obsolete. But, is it really so? Is Gandhi irrelevant today with all his lofty ideals? No Not at all. On the contrary he is more relevant today and his ideas more urgently needed than ever before.

Let’s have a brief glimpse of Gandhian concepts and then you will find yourself that Gandhi was the man for all seasons, for all times. His ideas were universal because they delved into the core of humanity and he tried to come up with values for the moral upliftment of all mankind. Can a man possessing such ideas ever become irrelevant ?

Despite the unprecedented advancement of science and technology, Gandhian ideas still hold good in economic, social and political fields. Gandhi realised that the fabric of the Indian economy rests on a rural base. The tiller is still the backbone of the Indian economy. If he remains illiterate, his crafts are not properly organised, if education is not centred around the crafts, villages are without water and the ecological balance is disturbed. Indian economy will not be able to progress much. If fact, Indian planners have again and again turned to take a second look at the rural sector from the Gandhian point of view. Gandhi was not against industrialisation but his venue was half-a million villages which he wanted to see developed as authentic village republics. He pleaded for the technology that would supplement and complement the man-power and animal-power easily available in India. That was the way to safeguard unemployment and starvation.

Gandhi’s concept of a decentralised economy and industrialisation would perhaps have led to a prosperous village population with an exploitation-free equitable distribution of natural resources, means and instruments of production as well as the produce. The fact that India is now concentrating on the production of bio-gas and solar energy is itself vindication of Gandhi’s ideas. In the political field, we are experimenting with Tanchayati Raj, Lok Ayuktas’ etc.

Some of Gandhi’s views on education, too, are absolutely relevant today. In the highly materialistic America which has reached the zenith of economic prosperity, there is a strong advocacy in favour of school prayers which is nothing but Gandhi’s offshoot of spiritual and religious education. Gandhi felt that education should not only increase knowledge, but develop the culture of the heart and the hand. It should teach self-reliance and inculcate the value of manual labour. It should be self-financing, i.e., educational institutions should not ask for outside help, but manage to exist and develop on their own internal resources, and finally it must be craft-centred. All these are valid points and are being experimented with now. Vocational training in fact, is just a takeoff from craft centred education.

Gandhi has often been accused of being Conservative. But it would be wrong to call him so. His views were conditioned by the knowledge of life in the country where the standards of living were deplorably low, unemployment had assumed staggering proportions and the privileged few were leading the most sophisticated life.

Gandhiji did not have any soft corner in his heart for rich. His concept of trusteeship has often been misunderstood. Trusteeship is a means of transforming the present capitalistic system into an egalitarian order. It does not recognise any right of private ownership of property except to the extent regarded by the community as essential for its welfare.

Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy of life has been criticised to such an extent that independent India has completely repudiated it Modern India is committed to the operation of highly-centralised Parliamentary Government, the creating of a socialistic order, large-scale industrialisation on the western pattern and modern science and technology. But Mahatma’s views on autonomous villages, his advocacy of cottage industries, charkha and khaddar his general opposition to mass production, big labour-saving machinery and imitation of western production methods should be considered in the context of the conditions prevailing in the country. His greatest contribution to modern thought lies in his insistence that man is fundamentally a spiritual and moral being and that society is an association of human spirit, an association which is not limited in any way by considerations of nationality, race, creed or sex.

Today, when there has been a deep erosion of moral values in our public life and when ethical principles have virtually disappeared from politics, Gandhian values appear as a whiff of fresh air. In his time Gandhi provided not only political but also moral leadership to the country, something which is missing in today’s India. However, the yearning for raising the level of our public life remains and as long as that is there, Gandhi can never become irrelevant.


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