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Day to day with Gandhi - Volume I
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Cover Page
Publisher's note
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( vi )
needed, though not constantly as the situation had to that extent improved, two big activities fell into Gandhiji's hands. In quick succession he had to wage two fights, one for getting an increase in the workers' 'wages in the mills in Ahmedabad owing to the rise in prices and the other, for securing suspension of land revenue in the Kaira District where the crops had failed. We have with us authentic accounts of both these fights in Sri Shankarlal Parikh's book "Khedani Ladat"( "The Kaira Satyagraha" ) and in another book by Mahadevbhai himself "Ek Dharmayuddha" ( 'A Holy war' ). But for the first time some letters appear in this diary that shed a new light on the fights and clearly show how Bapuji's mind was then working.

    About the mill-workers' strike, the then Collector of Ahmedabad frankly expresses to Bapu himself his admiration of the way in which the strike was conducted. He says,

      This is the first time in my life when I see a fight between the employers and workers carried on with so much love and regard for each other." ( p. 52 ).

     This distinguishing feature of the fight is clearly evidenced in Gandhiji's letters to mill-owners and to Sri Ambalal Sarabhai specially ( pp. 5 and 55 ). It is in this diary, moreover, that the reader gets a clearer idea of the significance of his fast during the mill-workers' strike. He writes,


     "The Ahmedabad strike provided the richest lessons of life. The power of love was never so effectively demonstrated to me as it was during the lock-out… … … Those four days were to me days of peace, blessing and spiritual uplift. There never was the slightest desire to eat during those days." ( p. 78 ).

And in another letter,

     "I consider the fast as my greatest achievement in life. I had an experience of supernal serenity while it lasted." ( p.92 ).

     In his morning prayer sermon at the Ashram, he explained very tersely the necessity of his fast as well as the flaw underly-


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