Short Stories For Everyone
Inspiring incidents from Gandhiji's Life: Selected from the book Everyone's Gandhi
(For the children in the age group of 10 to 15 years)

Gandhiji writing


Gandhi's inspiring short stories selected from the book Everyone's Gandhi

Editor by : Rita Roy

Table of Contents

  1. All for A Stone
  2. A Car And A Pair of Binoculars
  3. My Master's Master
  4. Enter The Monkeys
  5. Premchand Quits His Job
  6. Returning His Medals
  7. Basic Pen
  8. Prisoner No. 1739
  9. Gandhi's White Brother
  10. Who Saw Gandhi?
  11. An Early School
  12. An Unusual March
  13. Spiritual Heir
  14. The Less You Have The More You Are
  15. An Old Goat Talks
  16. The Phoenix Settlement
  17. Gandhi in Amsterdam
  18. Something To Be Shy About?
  19. Gandhiji The Matchmaker
  20. Gandhi's Army
  21. Dandi Snippet
  22. Hiding Something
  23. The Image Maker
  24. Creative Reader
  25. Postcards To The Rescue
  26. A Non-violent Satyagraha 214 Years Ago
  27. Gandhi And Delhi
  28. Gandhiji's Constructive Programme
  29. Gandhi Looks At Leprosy
  30. Baba Amte
  31. They Gave Peace A Chance
  32. From Mahatma To God
  33. Customs Are Out of Fashion
  34. The Man 'Charlie' Wanted To Meet
  35. It Came Naturally To Him
  36. Crossing The Sea of Narrow-Mindedness
  37. Wear Clothes As They Should Be Worn
  38. Education: For Life, Through Life
  39. The Abode of Joy
  40. To Cling to A Belief
  41. The Fruit of A Child's Labour
  42. An Ideal Prisoner
  43. How A Film Became Something More
  44. Gandhi: Beyond India
  45. Gandhi's Life-Saving Medicine
  46. Understanding The Mechanics of Life With Gandhi
  47. The Lokmanya and The Mahatma
  48. Man's Gift To Nature
  49. Gurudev And His Mahatma
  50. One-man Boundary Force
  51. What Does Mahatma Gandhi's Message Mean To Me?
  52. Let's Play Together
  53. Children's Response To Conflict
  54. Beggar By Choice
  55. The Better Half
  56. Uncle Gandhi
  57. The Watch: An Instrument For Regulating Life
  58. Light The Lamp of Your Mind
  59. Gandhi's Bet!
  60. Gandhi Feeling At Home In The Kitchen
  61. What Is Simplicity?
  62. Bapu And The Sardar
  63. The Power of Quality
  64. Gandhi: The Teenager!

Chapter 57: The Watch: An Instrument For Regulating Life

You see many types of watches, some with coloured pictures on the dial made for children; some for ladies, very delicately designed and for men-- pocket as well as wrist watches. Some of these cost a fortune which look very ornamental and are worn as part of the dress.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi acquired a watch for the first time as part of his dress. In the early days of his stay as a student of law in London, he spent a good amount of money to look like an English gentleman who was immaculately dressed. He wore a morning coat, a double-breasted vest, a necktie, dark striped trousers, a silk top hat, patent leather shoes with spats; carried a pair of gloves and a silver mounted cane and to complete the attire, he obtained a double watch-chain of gold from India-courtesy elder brother's generosity.
Later on, when he had taken to earning only a loin cloth, the only thing he retained from the 'gentleman's attire was the watch'.
The little piece of nickel hanging by the left side of his waist, that you see in pictures of him, was a metre regulating his life. He could not think of a better gift than a watch for the two detectives in London attached to him during his stay in 1931. He sent them each a pocket watch with the inscription "With love from M. K. Gandhi.'
Gandhiji utilized every minute of his time purposefully. One morning his twelve-year old son Manilal heard him murmuring standing before the wash basin. The son curiously asked, ,Father what are you doing, mumbling to yourself?" "I'm learning verses from the Gita," replied Gandhi.
In April 1921, Gandhiji was to give a talk at the Gujarat Vidyapith. The car that had to take him there was late. Gandhiji immediately took the bicycle from Prof. Malkani and rode off to be in time for the academic appointment.
Once his grandson Kantilal made a slight error of one minute in telling the time. The young man was scolded, "Don't keep a watch unless you have a sense of time." Even Lokmanya Tilak was not spared. He had reached the Political Conference at Godhra half an hour late. Gandhiji commented, "If we are half an hour late in winning Swaraj then the blame will be on Lokmanyaji's head."
Prof. Nirmal Kumar Bose recalls, "As Gandhiji prepared to go to bed, we had to keep every little thing that he might require in the night or early in the morning in its proper place. The twig had to be thrashed and split from his tooth brush and kept immersed in a wide mouthed bottle in exactly the same height of water; his pocket watch with the alarm set at 4 a.m. had to be kept under pillow." This was done because he did not wish to waste a single moment in hunting for anything.
The only time Gandhiji forgot his watch was a few minutes before he died. Till 4.55 p.m. on Friday, 30 January 1948 Gandhiji was deeply absorbed in an important discussion with Sardar Patel. His prayer meeting was to start at 5 p.m. Abha was hesitant to interrupt but knowing his commitment to punctuality, picked up the nickel plated watch and pointed out that he was getting late. On the way to the prayer ground Abha said, "Bapu, your watch must be feeling very neglected, you did not even look at it today!"

Contributed by Dr (Mrs) Rashmi-Sudha Puri, Director, Gandhi Bhavan Punjab University, Chandigarh