This Day in History, January 30th, 1948: Mohandas Gandhi AssassinatedPosted: January 30, 2015
Gandhi was assassinated on this day in 1948, a shocking and dispiriting event covered by media all across the world, including a mournful Nation. But perhaps more interesting to read today is this article from our issue of May 6, 1897, “East Indians in South Africa,” written by Alfred Webb, an Irish MP and an early president of the Indian National Congress.
According to the historian Ramachandra Guha, this is the first mention of Gandhi ever to appear in the American press.
The population of India increases rapidly and encroaches upon the means of subsistence. South Africa is the nearest outlet for emigration. The climate is congenial; and thither numbers of Indians have repaired…. While all were at first welcomed as helpful toward the development of the country, all alike have been subjected to disabilities by color prejudice and by law…. M.K. Gandhi, a Hindu barrister, long resident in South Africa, returned to India to arouse public interest in the subject. His address at Bombay, last September, has been published…Mr. Gandhi says: “The general feeling throughout South Africa is that of hatred towards the Indians, encouraged by the newspapers and connived at, even countenanced, by the legislators…(read more)