Gandhi's Salt March 1930 | Nonviolent Defense/Liberation Strategy

Gandhi brought Satyagraha to India in 1915 and was soon elected to the Indian National Congress political party. He began to push for independence from British rule, organizing resistance to a 1919 law that gave British authorities the power to imprison suspected revolutionaries without trial. Britain responded by mowing down 400 unarmed protesters and killing them in the Amritsar Massacre.

Now Gandhi pushed even harder for home rule, encouraging boycotts of British goods and organizing mass protests. He organized the famous 241-mile-long Salt March, In response,  Britain beat and imprisoned 60,000 peaceful protesters.

He began the Quit India movement, a campaign to get Britain to voluntarily withdraw from India during World War 11. Britain refused and arrested him again. In 1944 Gandhi was released from prison and Britain made plans to withdraw from the Indian subcontinent. [1]

After the Labor Party took power in Britain in 1947, negotiations over Indian home rule began between the British, the Congress Party and the Muslim League. Later that year India received its independence, but the country was split into two dominions: India and Pakistan. Gandhi opposed the partition but hoped Hindus and Muslims would eventually be able to live peacefully together. Unfortunately it hasn’t happened.

In January 1948, Gandhi carried out a fast, trying to bring peace in the city of Delhi. But 12 days after the fast ended, while on his way to an evening prayer meeting, he was assassinated by a Hindu fanatic. The next day, roughly 1 million people followed the procession as he was carried through the streets and cremated on the banks of the holy Jumna River. [2]


The following from Gandhi’s autobiography:

“A variety of incidents in my life have conspired to bring me in close contact with people of many creeds and many communities, and my experience with all of them warrants the statement that I have known no distinction between relatives and strangers, countrymen and foreigners, white and coloured, and Hindus and Indians of other faiths, whether Musalmans, Parsis, Christians or Jews. I may say that my heart has been incapable of making any such distinctions.” [3]

If only the whole world’s people could think that way!



[3] Gandhi, M. K. (1927) An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth, Navjivan Publishing House, , Ahmedabad, p. 287

Next we will turn to someone completely different, Albert Schweitzer, who was known for his service to the sick in Gabon, Africa. He was a man with many talents: a religious philosopher, author of many books. A concert organist, a preacher and lecturer. But at the age of thirty, despite all this success, he decided to plunge into something completely different. He decided to go to medical school, become a doctor, and build a hospital in Africa.

This has been Part 32 of the series, A Life Worth Living. Read Part 33 – Albert Schweitzer