1922, Gandhiji was sentenced to six years imprisonment by the British Government. He told in the court that I am ready for the highest possible punishment. What is a crime according to the Government is nothing else but only my duty towards humanity. I have just acted accordingly.
The news of Gandhiji’s statement and the penalty he demanded, reached all
corners of the country. On hearing the news, a Muslim watchman residing in a
remote village of Bengal wept. A revolutionary named Shri Datt, who lived in his
building, asked the reason of his crying.
The watchman had the Bengali news paper in his hand, in which the news of
Gandhiji’s case had appeared. He told Datt that a person of my own caste has
been severely punished. It is six years of jail, he is an old man of 53 years,
see this paper.
It was mentioned in the news paper that, Gandhiji described his job as a weaver
and farmer. The Muslim watchman was a weaver by caste. He was deeply touched
therefore, that someone of his own has been punished.
Shri Datt writes in his reminiscences, ‘How do we call ourselves revolutionary?
It is only Gandhiji who is a revolutionary in a true sense and not us. He has
become one with the whole nation. Gandhiji’s utterance as weaver and farmer must
have reached throughout the nation. Crores of people must have felt as if
someone of their own has been jailed. Only he, who has established the contact
with the masses, having identified with them, can free the nation. I sincerely
bow to this true revolutionary.’