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Relationship Information, Quotes, and Trivia
Where and/or how did Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi meet?
In May 1883, the 13-year old Mohandas was married to 14-year old Kasturbai Makhanji (her first name was usually shortened to "Kasturba", and affectionately to "Ba") in an arranged child marriage, according to the custom of the region.
Why did Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi break up?
After a short while, Kasturba stopped breathing. She died in Gandhi's arms while both were still in prison, in Poona (now Pune).
Other Relationship Information about Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi:
In 1885, when Gandhi was 15, the couple's first child was born, but survived only a few days, and Gandhi's father, Karamchand Gandhi, had died earlier that year. Mohandas and Kasturba had four more children, all sons: Harilal, born in 1888; Manilal, born in 1892; Ramdas, born in 1897; and Devdas, born in 1900.
Kasturba Gandhi joined her husband in political protests. She traveled to South Africa in 1897 to be with her husband. From 1904 to 1914, she was active in the Phoenix Settlement near Durban. During the 1913 protest against working conditions for Indians in South Africa, Kasturbai was arrested and sentenced to three months in a hard labor prison. Later, in India, she sometimes took her husband's place when he was under arrest. In 1915, when Gandhi returned to India to support indigo planters, Kasturba accompanied him. She taught hygiene, discipline, reading and writing to women and children.
Kasturba suffered from chronic bronchitis due to complications at birth. While her husband could move his mind from one thing to another, she would sometimes brood over troubles. Stress from the Quit India Movement's arrests and hard life at Sabarmati Ashram caused her to fall ill. Kasturbai fell ill with bronchitis which was subsequently complicated by pneumonia.
In January 1944, Kasturba suffered two heart attacks. She was confined to her bed much of the time. Even there she found no respite from pain. Spells of breathlessness interfered with her sleep at night. Yearning for familiar ministrations, Kasturba asked to see an Ayurvedic doctor. After several delays (which Gandhi felt were unconscionable), the government allowed a specialist in traditional Indian medicine to treat her and prescribe treatments. At first she responded, recovering enough by the second week in February to sit on the verandah in a wheel chair for a short periods, and chat... then came a relapse. The doctor said Ayurvedic medicine could do no more for her. To those who tried to bolster her sagging morale saying "You will get better soon," Kasturba would respond, "No, my time is up." Shortly after seven that evening, Devdas took Mohandas and the doctors aside.
In what he would later describe as "the sweetest of all wrangles I ever had with my father," he pleaded fiercely that Ba be given the life saving medicine, even though the doctors told him her condition was beyond help. It was Mohandas, after learning that the penicillin had to be administered by injection every four to six hours, who finally persuaded his youngest son to give up the idea. "Why do you want to prolong your mother's agonies after all the suffering she has been through?" Gandhi asked. Then he said, "You can't cure her now, no matter what miracle drug you may muster. But if you insist, I will not stand in your way."
Classic Quotes by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi about their relationship:
"As we didn't know much about marriage, for us it meant only wearing new clothes, eating sweets and playing with relatives." Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi