The salt march of 1930 is a good example of Gandhi ‘s nonviolence, or satyagraha as he called it (from satya truth and graha strength). To protest at the government’s salt tax, Gandhi proposed a 240-mile march from Ahmedabad to the coastal town of Dandi in India. The salt tax charged the Indian people for a basic human necessity and prevented them making their own salt. Gandhi wrote to the Viceroy, Lord Irwin, explaining his intentions: “My ambition is no less than to convert the British people through nonviolence, and thus make them see the wrong they have done to India”.
When the marchers reached the sea, they started making salt from the sea-water, thus breaking the law. This gesture led to civil disobedience breaking out in many parts of India. 60,000 people were arrested.
The second stage of the campaign was to try and take over the salt works at Dharasana. Volunteers marched towards the salt works and, as policemen struck them down with heavy sticks, more volunteers came forward to take their place. Although thousands more arrests were made, the Viceroy decided it was a stalemate and he held talks with Gandhi, which resulted in the Salt Acts being interpreted more humanely and in an agreement that Gandhi could represent his Congress Party at the 1931 Round Table Conference in London. The Conference led nowhere but the salt march gave Indians self-respect and confidence that they could gain independence.
Gandhi was a man who preached nonviolence. He always strove to be calm and collected in all his actions. I doubt Gandhi would have cursed if offered an ambulance during his hunger strike. I doubt he would have gotten hot headed when he was speaking on platform. I doubt he would have politicised his actions and got the true message of his caused all muddled . I doubt Wayne Kublalsingh could ever be compared to the great Mahatma!