Today (Oct 2) marks the 150th birthday of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who was more commonly known as Mahatma Gandhi.
Decades after his passing, Gandhi remains a popular figure not only in India, but in the world as well.
Well known for his bespectacled smiley face and revered for his resilience against the British colonisation, Gandhi played a pivotal role in giving birth to an independent India.
But did you know these facts about the man who India refers to as "Bapu"?
1. He Had False Teeth
Anywhere he went, Gandhi made sure he carried his set of false teeth in the fold of his linen cloth. He would only put the set on during lunch and dinner. Once he was done eating, he would clean them up and put them away.
2. (Initially) Atrocious At Public Speaking
There's a famous story about Gandhi being called to make a speech in court upon his graduation from London University and becoming an attorney. The young Gandhi was said to be so nervous and afraid that he was seen with trembling knees. He was said to have sat down, unable to continue with his speech.
3. Gandhi Was Pretty Fashionable
Way before he became known for his loincloth, Gandhi had a good taste in fashion. During his years studying in London, he wore a hat, silk spats and yes, carried a cane just like an Englishman.
4. Quite a Wealthy Person
Gandhi had once famously remarked that he was born in India but made in South Africa. Years before his involvement in civil rights movements, Gandhi had worked as an attorney. His salary reached fifteen thousand dollars – a pretty hefty amount for an Indian then.
5. Gandhi Had Famous Admirers
While Gandhi has certainly left a huge mark in Indian history, he also left a pretty big impression on the lives of some other prominent people, specifically American industrialist, Henry Ford. The businessman was gifted a spinning wheel – the 'Charka', autographed by Gandhi. Ford would spin it during the woeful days of the Second World War.
So the next time you feel small and insignificant, just remember that even the great Mahatma Gandhi had his own shortcomings and yet, managed to leave a huge mark in history and on people's lives!
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