On several weekends, young students gather and discuss social issues: communalism, consumerism, marginalisation of women and the poor, the environment, crisis in agriculture and of course the limits of present ways of governance. G.G. sits at the edges of such gatherings of the young Biradari and watches intently for signs of ignition. "If you want enduring change for the better, youth must learn to agitate for it. The greatest tragedy of today's India is the lack of this urge," whispers the 82 year old.
Gandhi in the dark:
Which is why, at the Republic Day function of the Yusuf Meherally School, he is dry-eyed as he listens to speech after speech heaping praise on him and his wife. Nor is he taken in much by all the feet-touching and garlanding. When he finally rises to speak, he returns to the need for 'sangarsh'. Settling down in comfort or doing token social work is not enough. The only worthwhile education is the one that leads to sustainable change for everyone.
It's dark during the long drive back to central Mumbai. It had been a long, busy day. Everyone is silent. Then apropos of nothing,G.G. pipes up: "I *Enjoy* reading Gandhi," he says, and pauses a long while."Every time I am lost or confused, I open anywhere in his collected works and within minutes I find him uncannily relevant. Then I am quickly healed and determined again." He resumes his silence, enfolded in his conviction.
Which urges this thought: Must sit down and look up Gandhi; wonder what he has said today.
Dr G G Parikh
D 15 Ganesh Prasad,
Naushir Bharucha Marg, Mumbai - 200 007
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