GANDHI IN ACTION network

the Spirit of Mahatma Gandhi lives through every nonviolent action

Prof. Dr. Yogendra Yadav

Senior Gandhian Scholar

Gandhi Research Foundation, Jalgaon, Maharashtra, India

Contact No. – 09404955338, 09415777229

E-mail- dr.yadav.yogendra@gandhifoundation.net;

dr.yogendragandhi@gmail.com

Mailing Address- C- 29, Swaraj Nagar, Panki, Kanpur- 208020, Uttar Pradesh, India

 

Pandit Sunderlal and Mahatma Gandhi

 

Pandit Sunderlal was a freedom fighter. He had done work with Mahatma Gandhi in Sevagram Ashram, Wardha. He had participated in every movement guided by Mahatma Gandhi.

Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to G. D. Birla, in which he described about Pandit Sunderlal, “Pandit Sunderlal saw me here and asked me if I had received your letter. I told him I had and that I had also sent you a reply. Sunderlal says that you had not received my letter till you left for Hardwar and wants me to write another. I do not wish to write to you anything concerning the financial help asked of you. If you want any advice as to whether or not you should give Sunderlal any financial help, you had better consult Jamnalalji. Sunderlal says he wants your help independently of me and wants me only to write to you about his work. I can certainly say that Sunderlalji is a patriot, a non-cooperator, full of enthusiasm, has great capacity for work and commands influence over youth. He is very independent-minded.” 1 

Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to J. B. Kripalani, in which he described about Pandit Sunderlal, “I forgot to write to you about one matter arising out of your letter of yesterday, i.e., the egregious speech reported to have been made by Pandit Sunderlal. I have never said to anybody or at the All India Congress Committee meeting that, even though the Government carried out the terms of the Truce, I would not go because of the Hindu-Muslim dissensions. But let us hope that Pandit Sunderlal never said what is imputed to him.” 2 Mahatma Gandhi wrote, “Only today could I reach your telegram of the 18th. So I am not replying by wire. May what you have begun meet with brilliant success.”  3

Mahatma Gandhi wrote, “Your optimism is terrific. I have answered Sultana. She has not written back. I am ready. So far as I am concerned there is no quarrel.” 4 Mahatma Gandhi wrote, “The Punjab Press reports a deliberate and unprovoked attack on Pandit Sunderlal and Lala Jagannath of the Servants of People Society by four young Hindus at 11 o’clock at night while they were on their way to Lajpatrai Bhavan. The attack is said to have been made because of Pandit Sunderlal having delivered addresses in Lahore on Hindu- Muslim unity in which all offensive language was studiously avoided. One can understand, though never pardon, an attack on some provocation. But an attack such as was delivered on Pandit Sunderlal has no extenuating circumstances. These young men are reported to be members of the Hindu Mahasabha. I hope that the responsible officials will repudiate the action of the youths. Public opinion should make such hooliganism impossible. As for Pandit Sunderlal, his cause will prosper for the savagery, and more so because of his dignified disregard and forgiveness of it.” 5

Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter, “I had read about your case in the newspapers. I felt sorry. Is there no scope for an appeal? What does Dr. Sapru say? I understand what you say regarding the Hindustani Prachar Sabha. Dr. Tara Chand could not join it, but do invite Dr. Abdul Haq Saheb to come. Even though there are Muslim members in the Sabha, Abdul Haq Saheb ought to be there. I have occasionally noticed the activities of the Hindustani Culture Society. We should welcome whatever people are able to do. I note that your lectures are going on. They must be having a good impact. Come whenever you can.” 6 Mahatma Gandhi wrote, “I have read what you sent me regarding the name ‘Hindi’. I 1 Literary Committee of the Hindustani Prachar Sabha shall watch what you do. I leave for Delhi today.” 7

Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Hunter, in which he described about Pandit Sunderlal, “There has been some delay in replying as I was in correspondence with Jivanji. I should indeed like to have you with me as I do not have many Urdu hands who can work with speed. Moreover, Pandit Sunderlal has spoken to me about you at length.” 8 Mahatma Gandhi wrote a letter to Syed Mahmud, in which he told about Pandit Sunderlal, “I cannot dictate this in the Urdu script because Manubehn does not know Urdu. If you are not required to stay there, I should like you to come and stay here and Harijan will be dispatched from here. Have a talk with Pandit Sunderlal and take whatever decision you wish to.” 9 Mahatma Gandhi wrote, “I have your letter and the enclosed papers. Let me see when I can go through them. I am writing this at 4.50 in the morning.” 10

 

References:

 

  1. LETTER TO G. D. BIRLA, August 22, 1924
  2. LETTER TO J. B. KRIPALANI, August 22, 1931
  3. LETTER TO SUNDERLAL, November 22, 1941
  4. LETTER TO SUNDERLAL, December 16, 1941
  5.   Harijan, 8-3-1942
  6. LETTER TO SUNDERLAL, November 23, 1944
  7.    LETTER TO SUNDERLAL, May 14, 1946
  8. LETTER TO HUNNAR, September 15, 1946
  9. LETTER TO SYED MAHMUD, December 20, 1946
  10. LETTER TO SUNDERLAL, July 25, 1947
  11.  

 

 

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