15. Ashram - 2

There was a student's hostel in the Ashram. Many students from the country and abroad lived there. Some of them tried to learn spinning the yarn, comb the cotton or weave Khadi cloth on the handloom. Many students used to learn making spinning wheel in the carpentry workshop.

There were both boys and girls in the Ashram. All of them studied there as well as learnt these occupations.

There was a dormitory for women inmates. They would gather there and pray. They used to study, card the cotton and spin yarn. These women inmates managed the kitchen of the Ashram. They used to clean the grains in the store and cook food turn by turn.

There was also a nursery school for small children but there were no special teachers to attend to them. So, the women inmates worked there also!

There was a tannery also in the Ashram. The skin of the dead animals was tanned there. They believed that using slaughtered animals' skin was violence. So, they used the skin of dead animals to make shoes and chappals.

The Ashram inmates worked in the fields also. They had planted trees of fruits and plants of different types of cotton. Vegetables were also grown there. The grains and cotton were grown in those fields.

All the men, women and children took part in all these jobs. Turn by turn they worked in the kitchen, stored water, cleaned utensils, as well as cleaned the Ashram, the cow-pen and the toilets. They also worked in the kitchen garden.

Just like a beehive, there used to be continuous activity in Gandhiji's Ashram from sunrise to sunset. Gandhiji had named it 'Udyog Mandir' (the temple of work) which was quite appropriate.