Mahatma (Great Soul) Gandhi (1869-1948)
He's considered to be the father of his country. He was the leader of the Indian nationalist movement against British rule. He's internationally esteemed for his doctrine of non-violence to achieve political and social progress.
The Indian people had disliked British rule since the 10th centenary. There were campaigns of civil disobedience and non-cooperation with the British by some members of the Indian congress party for example Nehru. They took up the cause of home rule in 1917 and were guided in their campaign by Mahatma (Muhandas). He encouraged the boycotting of British goods and non-payment of taxes, he also encouraged passive, or non-violent, resistance to the British.
In early 1930 Gandhi, Nehru and the congress made a call for purna swarag, or complete independence from British rule. Gandhi wrote a letter which he addressed to Lord Erwin, the viceroy on March the 2nd. He wrote " Dear Friend, I cannot intentionally hurt anything that lives, much less fellow human beings, even though they may do the greatest wrong to me and mine. Whilst therefore, I hold the British rule to be a curse, I do not intend to harm a single Englishman or any legitimate interest he may have in India " Gandhi went on to note the inequities in the salary paid to Indians and British officials. For example the viceroy received over five thousand times the Indians national income. Gandhi didn't wish to humiliate the viceroy and apologised for taking "A personal illustration to drive home a painful truth". The system of administration carried out in India was the most expensive in the world and it had only served to further impoverish and endear.
In an act of "Civil disobedience", he informed Erwin that he intended to break the salt laws. The British exercised a monopoly on the production and sale of salt, this essential ingredient was needed...