Thursday, 15 December 2016


It is also supposed that the best trustee of Gandhiji's conception was no more than a man with some philanthropic urges. For instance, if there was a raja or a millionaire who lived a simple personal life, now and then gave handsome donations, founded good charitable institutions, or made a charitable trust of a part of his property, and if in addition to this, he was also kind to his servants, civil in his general behaviour towards the poor, a hospitable host, obliging to friends, free from gross vices and a ' church-going man ' (as he would be called in England), nothing more was to be expected of him to fulfill the obligations of a trustee. His personal household budget, or the manner in which he acquired his wealth was not to be inquired into.
But none of these suppositions are warantable. The word trustee is a legal term, and all the rights and duties that law chooses to assign to that term from time to time will apply to the trustee of Gandhiji's theory, plus a good deal more on moral grounds not covered by law. In 1936 I contributed a series of
articles under the caption "Gandhism to Socialism", which were edited and corrected by Gandhiji himself. Therein I explained the theory of trusteeship as follows:
"The problem of stopping exploitation is related to, and is often held to be identical with the institution of private property, and in Gandhism-Socialism controversies this question is perhaps discussed with greater warmth than any other. On this matter Gandhiji has perhaps more radical views than the most
extreme Communist.

 He would like to dispossess every person of all kinds of belongings. If he tolerates the institution of private property, it is not because he loves it, or holds it to be necessary for the progress of humanity, but
because he has yet to discover a truthful and non-violent method of abolishing that institution. I think that all Socialists believe that possessions are absolutely essential to make mankind happy. Gandhiji does not accept that position in theory. But as a practical proposition, he feels, that mankind is not going to give up possessions, within a time which can be estimated. The only thing, therefore, to be considered is in what capacity p ersons having actual control over and possession of property should be deemed to have it or in what spirit they should be suffered to possess it. Gandhiji says that… "
From : Gandhi and Marx
By: K. G. Mashruwala

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