Posts Tagged ‘Mahatma Gandhi’


Gandhi and the politics of blame

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013
Gandhi's room

Gandhi’s room in Mani Bhavan, Mumbai

The birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, October 2, is a good time to reflect on the theme of leadership and how politics can be a great force for good.

I write as a bitterly divided US congress has led to the first Government shut-down in 17 years with both Democrats and Republicans hoping that the public will blame the other side more than it hurts their own.  And here in Australia we have just had an election which both major parties said would be fought on the question of trust. The result is that the public’s trust in politicians is at an all-time low.

Last February I took part in a Dialogue on Democracy in Panchgani, India. It was the second such conference. Participants came from several countries struggling – often painfully – towards greater participation by citizens in how their countries are run.  We heard people from Syria, Egypt, Burma/Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Tibet express how it sometimes seemed that for every step forward there were two steps back. (more…)

Gandhi and leadership

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013
Rajmohan Gandhi (left)

Mike with Rajmohan Gandhi (left)

Back in February I travelled to India to participate in an international conference, Dialogue on Democracy, in Panchgani, Maharashtra. I was last there 27 years ago so it was interesting to reconnect with familiar places and faces and also to see how much had changed.  It was also a chance to reconnect with Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson and biographer of Mahatma Gandhi, and I was fortunate to share a 5-hour taxi ride with him back to Mumbai after the conference finished.

A while back I purchased and started reading Rajmohan’s mammoth biography of his grandfather, but it was only after this visit to India that I was inspired to read it properly.  And after reading it, it was several more months before I felt I had digested it enough to write a review.  Well I have now done that. The review is on Amazon.com, but I also include it below. (more…)