By Shuriah Niazi
NEW DELHI (AA) - India on Thursday will mark the 72nd death anniversary of its founding father Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.
Mahatma Gandhi, as he is known by his followers with reverence, preached the philosophy of non-violence which has become even more relevant today.
His commitment to non-violence and satyagraha (peaceful resistance) gave hope to marginalized sections of India.
Rajmohan Gandhi, while remembering his grandfather, said his ideals and principles are much-needed in India nowadays where intolerance rules the roost.
He told Anadolu Agency: "It seems that people are looking at or toward Gandhi. The problems and troubles of the present times remind me of Gandhi's struggle for the causes that were dear to him. And people are also taking inspiration from him."
“I traveled to many places and everywhere I see that people talk about the freedom of thought and expression and they want to speak and write fearlessly. And sometimes they talk about and remember Mahatma Gandhi's struggle. It seems that Gandhi's views are very relevant today,” said Rajmohan Gandhi, who is a well-known historian.
India is witnessing widespread protests against a controversial citizenship law that is seen as discriminatory against Muslims.
Touching upon the status quo in India, he said: "See it is difficult to say that the whole situation of the country will change completely but people are trying. People are fighting bravely.
"The situation today is much different from what it was during Mahatma Gandhi's times. But there is a struggle for a just cause today just as it was during the times of Mahatma. The issues may be different but the struggle of people today reminds me of Mahatma Gandhi."
TRN Prabhu, president of the Sevagram Ashram set by Mahatma Gandhi in 1936 in the western state of Maharashtra, echoed the view.
“The present situation of unrest is undesirable and should not have been allowed to develop. The ruling party has a majority and they can make any law in the Parliament. We don’t have any problems. But when most of the people disagree, they should think about it,” he said.
He added: “The youth will revolt and this has been going on since those days when India was fighting for independence. [...] Gandhi becomes more relevant at this time.”
Mahatma Gandhi was shot dead on Jan. 30, 1948 by a gunman who was identified as Nathuram Godse. He was later executed for the murder.