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SELECTED LETTERS > GANDHI -SAROJINI NAIDU CORRESPONDENCELetter from Gandhiji to Sarojini Naidu, April 11, 1926

 

Letter from Gandhiji to Sarojini Naidu, April 11, 1926

ASHRAM
Sabarmati, 11-4-26

Your Secretary has asked for a message for the 13th about Jallianwalla Bagh. Here is the message:
The wanton massacre in Jallianwalla Bagh that took place on the 13th day of April, 1919 is a perpetual reminder to us that it will recur as often as we attempt to lift up our heads and desire no longer to live in bondage. British rule is imposed on India not for India`s service but for her exploitation. It is indeed to protect the commerce that is imposed upon India. The central item of that commerce is Manchester piece goods. If we will avenge the humiliation of Jallianwalla and Crawling we must at least cease to wear foreign cloth and pledge ourselves to wear handspun Khaddar. The former sterilises British commerce, the latter binds us to the poor whom we have neglected all these long years. Though not been exploiters of the outside world, we have exploited the peasantry in order to have ease and comfort. If we refuse to discard foreign cloth, if we find Khaddar too uncomfortable, so far as I can see we must accommodate ourselves to perpetual slavery. All the reforms that we may get will be turned [to?] dust if we are afraid to sacrifice ease, comfort and much more for the sake of the country.

Yours,

Srimati Sarojini Naidu,
Taj Mahal Hotel,
Bombay.

From: S N 19450; Collected Works, Volume 30, pages 275-76