What would Gandhiji have thought of Gandhigiri? Satiricus cannot say. But he thinks Gandhiji would have approved of it. At least the latest Gandhiji and the current Gandhian government would certainly go into secular raptures at the recent news that the Vardhaman Mahaveer Open University in Kota is going to start a certificate course on Gandhigiri as propounded by Sanjay Dutt in his film Lage raho Munna bhai.
According to the university authorities this course would be unlike courses in Gandhian philosophy offered by several institutes but would teach how to implement peaceful solutions of problems, big and small. It has been actually named a certificate course on Gandhigiri, explained as ?Non-violent conflict resolution?. This is wonderful news for dimwits like Satiricus who find it difficult to distinguish between a minister and a murderer these days. Now despite this dimwit Satiricus notices one special characteristic of this course, which is that it will teach a peaceful solution of a problem, not the right solution of that problem. Obviously, whether the solution is right or wrong is irrelevant so long as it is peaceful.
Fortunately, for the students of Gandhigiri, ample case study material is available, showing how Gandhiji went on solving problem after problem oh-so-peacefully. So naturally a primer on Gandhigiri would contain excellent examples of Gandhigiri solutions of Gandhian problems. And these examples date from long before Independence fell on us like a ton of bricks. For instance, when the Congress made Maulana Mohammed Ali its president for the 1923 annual session, he tried to stop the singing of Vande Mataram, with which every Congress session used to begin. When the delegates defied him and sang it, the Maulana walkedout and came back only after the song had been sung. When this conflict was referred to Gandhiji what was the Gandhigirian solution he found out! Simple. He decreed in favour of Mohammed Ali. Thus the ?Salutation to the Motherland? came to be amputated before the motherland came to be amputated. Even before that, during the Moplah massacre of Hindus, the problem for Gandhiji was that Hindus did not want to be massacred. Strange, no? But Gandhiji had a solution that was not only peaceful, it was even divine. For on September 29, 1921, he wrote in Young India: ?We have forgotten the divine out of dying for our faiths without retaliation.? See? Hindus need to learn from Gandhigiri that it is divine to be slaughtered like sheep. That is what Gandhiji told Hindus. And what did he tell Muslims? Nothing. Not a thing. As Ambedkar wrote (Writings and Speeches, Vol. 8), ?Gandhi has never called the Muslims to account even when they have been guilty of gross crimes against Hindus.? Not that in a peaceful solution submission cannot be preceded by a show of strength. There are problematic times when the show is required, the strength is not. Take the Partition times. In his prayer meeting on June 4, 1947 (Collected Works, Vol. 88) Gandhiji said, ?We would not give an inch of land as Pakistan under coercion… We would not accept Pakistan under the threat of violence. Only if they can convince us by peaceful argument… would we concede Pakistan.? In the same month he conceded it.
What does that show? It shows that Pakistan was an acceptably peaceful solution for the Hindu-Muslim problem that Gandhiji was always busy solving. With such inimitable instances of peaceful solutions Satiricus is sure that a tremendous text-book on Gandhigiri could be conveniently at hand for Munna bhai A.K.A. Sanjay Dutt when he teaches the first lesson. For the vice-chancellor of the university is reportedly planning to approach the film actor for the opening session of the course. But at the end of it all, stupid Satiricus cannot help asking a silly question. Now that we have converted from Hinduism to secularism, do we secularists really need any further coaching in Gandhigiri? Does not a secular mouse know that the only peaceful solution of its conflict with a communal cat is to find piecemeal peace in its belly?