Sushma Swaraj in South Africa | Travels in train to Remember Mahatma Gandhi's Satyagraha Journey


External Affairs Minister of India Mrs. Sushma Swaraj, who is out on a five-day visit to South Africa, took a train journey from Petrich to Pietermaritzburg, a railway station where a young aged Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi popularly known as Mahatma Gandhi developed his satyagraha principles. 

On the night of June 7, 1893, Mahatma Gandhi, a young lawyer was thrown out of his compartment while he was travelling in the train and when he refused to give up his seat in what was a whites-only compartment.

It was this incident which him on the path to satyagraha which has its tenets on peaceful resistance. He went on to summon people of South Africa and India against the discriminatory rule of British in both the nations.

The external affairs minister, who is in South Africa to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Gandhiji's satyagraha, also planted a sapling in the Phoenix settlement where the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi developed his non-violence philosophy.

Later, the incident of Gandhi being thrown off the train on a cold winter evening would be reenacted, and his two-sided bust would be established on the station platform.

Gandhi had spent 21 years in South Africa and returned to India in the year 1915.

The three-day commemoration event was started by the screening of Making of a Mahatma on Wednesday. A.B. Moosa, who owns the Cine Centre cinema the film was screened, told PTI that it was a moving moment as he recollected the relationship of his forefathers with the Mahatma.
He considered it his privilege to screen the movie at his cinema as he felt it was their forefathers who unwittingly led Mahatma Gandhi on the path of satyagraha.

Gandhiji was traveling on the train to submit legal papers for forebears of Moosa to Pretoria on that fateful night when he was thrown off the train.

Gandhi had been called from Gujarat to South Africa to fight a legal battle between two Indian merchant cousins.