25. A Representative of Sin
Gandhiji’s satyagraha (non-violent resistance) was governed by specific regulations. Exercising it without established rules was considered foul, a forced act. In the last twenty years (after 1950) nobody has presented an ideal for real ‘satyagrah’. As a result it turned into ‘Hatyagrah’ (massacre). It will either enervate the government legally or there will be mayhem. Gandhiji had labeled the Chourichoura massacre as a ‘national sin’ and had started fasting for its atonement. Many a people came to Gandhiji at that time to assure him that people knew that he worshipped non-violence. Nobody would dare hold him responsible for it. Then why consider him responsible for their sins? Gandhiji answered, “I consider myself a representative of India by heart. I am a servant representative of India. There are righteous as well as sinful people here. I represent all of them. The violence committed by anyone in the country is my responsibility. If I don’t regret on their behalf it will be shameful for me.” This is why the nation called him ‘Rashtrapita’ (The Father of the Nation).