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Invaluable donation
Gandhiji was traveling in Orissa to raise funds for Khadi work. Once, while he was sitting at a meeting, a very old lady came there. Her hair was like white sliver. She was bent at her back. She fought with the volunteers and came in to see Gandhiji, saying “I wish to have your glimpse.” She bowed to Gandhiji and then she took out an Adadhi (half Anna) from her oti (a knot at the end of her cloth), placed it near Gandhiji’s leg and then quietly went away.
Gandhiji held it instantly and pushed it into his oti. Sheth Jamanalal Bajaj, who was keeping all the accounts, sat by Gandhiji’s side.
He told Gandhiji, “Hand over that Adadhi to me.”
Gandhiji retorted, “That I cannot give to you.”
To this Jamanalalji said, “I collect all the cheques of thousands of the Charkha Sangh, and you do not trust me for this Adadhi?”
Gandhiji replied, “Its value is more than thousands of rupees. It is not a big thing for a man to donate thousand rupees out of lakhs of rupees he possesses. But, this poor old woman, dressed in tattered clothes, how generous it was on her part! The Adadhi given by her is more than crores.”