Mohandas Ghandi, commonly known as Mahatma, lived to age 79 and had more impact on the lives of people than most can dream of, but the ideology that he represented has lived on today and is present in many ways. He has set a precedent for action without violence that is evident across the world. However, there are also some suggestions that his example of fasting in protest has now been twisted to become a political tool.
Throughout his life Ghandi accomplished a great deal in his pursuit of simple living and discovering truth. He coined the word ‘satyagraha', meaning adherence to truth and Gandhian's still live by this today. Beginning with his work in South Africa for basic rights for Indian immigrants, Ghandi went on to become a major figure in Indian politics, and had a significant affect on Indian National Congress. After his imprisonment in 1920 he stepped away from politics in order to repair relations between Hindus and Muslims. Gandhi's legacy lives on today, despite his assassination in 1948, but whether this legacy has been twisted to turn his way of life into manipulative political tools is debateable.
Ghandi's presence today can be seen everywhere and his is certainly not a name that will be easily forgotten. His presence can be seen in the recent uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia and across other Middle East nations. US President Barack Obama has compared the non-violent protests that Egyptians used to force Mubarak to step down as a modern day tribute to Gandhi's methods. However, the criticisms of the fast by social activist Anna Hazare in 2011 question whether Gandhi's legacy is entirely a positive one as it could be considered as imposing governmental change through this behaviour. Anna Hazare has been described as a present day Gandhi and highly influential in Mumbai, although some of his views are considerably controversial. Ghandi's philosophy can be seen in political uprisings across the world and the non-violent resolutions that have come to pass can certainly be attributed to him.