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A Dream of Death

"I do not know if the sacrifice of Mr. Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi has gone in vain. His spirit always inspired me. I envy his sacrifice. Is it not shocking that this country has not produced another Ganesh Shankar? None after him came to fill the gap. Ganesh Shankar's Ahimsa was perfect Ahimsa. My Ahimsa will also be perfect if I could die similarly peacefully with axe blows on my head. I have always been dreaming of such a death, and I wish to treasure this dream. How noble that death will be,—a daggar attack on me from one side; an axe blow from another; a lathi wound administered from yet another direction and kicks and abuses from all sides and if in the midst of these I could rise to the occasion and remain non-violent and peaceful and could ask others to act and behave likewise, and finally I could die with cheer on my face and smile on my lips, then and then alone my Ahimsa will be perfect and true. I am hankering after such an opportunity and also wish Congressmen to remain in search of such an opportunity."


—Message sent by Mahatma Gandhi on the occasion of the celebration of the anniversary of the martyrdom of Shri Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi, who was killed in the Hindu-Muslim riot at Kanpur in 1931.