Whatever one may think of fasting as a method of solving social and political deadlocks and whatever one may think of its application to the Rajkot case, all will be glad that Gandhiji broke his fast on Tuesday. During the four days and half of its duration, Gandhiji's strength appreciably waned, and its continuance even for a few days longer would have been attended with grave risk to his life. According to Gandhiji's own avowal, it is due entirely to the Viceroy that this calamity was averted. Gandhiji, too has contributed to the happy result by not standing out for the terms of his ultimatum to the Thakore Sahib. The Thakore Sahib too has acted wisely in consenting to the points in dispute in the correspondence between himself and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, being referred to the adjudication of the Chief Justice of India. The Sardar's consent may be presumed from the acceptance of the condition by Gandhiji who has taken the conduct of the Rajkot affair where the Sardar left it. We are glad of this result not only because it puts an end to what had degenerated into a personal squabble between the Thakore Sahib and Sardar Patel, but also and even more, because it has created an atmosphere of genuine friendliness and goodwill in which the question of constitutional reform in British India and the States can be advanced further.  Lord Linlithgow's handling of this very delicate situation has been so satisfactory as to induce Gandhiji to forego his much-desired visit to the Congress now in session at Tripura, in order that he might meet the Viceroy at the first opportunity when he is fit to travel to Delhi. Evidently he feels that there is more important work to be done in Delhi than in Tripura. This we believe, is the first session of the Congress which Gandhiji has left to be conducted by his coadjutors without his personal guidance since it adopted the creed of non-cooperation. In view of the differences which have arisen over the election of Mr. Subhas Bose to the Presidentship, and the resignation of the majority of members of the Working Committee, Gandhiji's presence and services as conciliator will be much missed at Tripura. The article on the Rajkot fast on another page was written two days before its sudden end.


Source : Indian Social Reformer - March 11, 1939