Although like communal unity and removal of untouchability prohibition has been on the Congress programme since 1920, Congressmen have not taken the interest they might have taken in this very vital social and moral reform. If we are to reach our goal through non-violent effort, we may not leave to the future government the fate of lakhs of men and women who are labouring under the curse of intoxicants and narcotics.
Medical men can make a most effective contribution
towards the removal of this evil. They have to discover ways of weaning the
drunkard and the opium-addict from the curse.
Women and students have a special opportunity in
advancing this reform. By many acts of loving service they can acquire on
addicts a hold which will compel them to listen to the appeal to give up the
Congress committees can open recreation booths
where the tired labourer will rest his limbs, get healthy and cheap
refreshments, and find suitable games, All this work is fascinating and
uplifting. The non-violent approach to Swaraj is a novel approach. In it old
values give place to new. In the violent way such reforms may find no place.
Believers in that way, in their impatience and, shall I say, ignorance, put off
such things to the day of deliverance. They forget that lasting and healthy
deliverance comes from within, i.e. from self-purification. Constructive workers
make legal prohibition easy and successful even if they do not pave the way for