Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram
Sabarmati Ashram was the Ashram established by the Great Indian independence movement leader Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi fondly called Mahatma Gandhi, on the banks of River Sabarmathi in Ahmedabad, Gujarat state of India.
Mahatma Gandhi lived at this Ashram spread over 36 acres of land for around 12 years. This ashram on the banks of Sabarmati river is known by different names like Gandhi Ashram, Satyagraha Ashram and Harijan Ashram.
Gandhi’s first Ashram was Kochrab Ashram alias Satyagraha Ashram, which was started on 25th May, 1915. After around two years, Kochrab Ashram was infested with plague disease. Hence Gandhiji relocated to the new Sabarmati Ashram.
Gandhi carried out farming and animal husbandry at Sabarmati Ashram. He also started a school which concentrated on harnessing the manual labor, agriculture, literacy, etc, for the country’s self-sufficiency.
It was from Sabarmati Ashram that Mahatma Gandhi started the Dandi march (Salt Satyagraha) in 12th March 1930. This led to mass civil disobedience and thousands of people were arrested all over the country. To contain Gandhi’s activities, the British Government took control of the Ashram and his pleas to return it was not allowed. On 22nd July 1933, Gandiji decided to disband Sabarmati ashram and took a pledge not to return to Sabarmati Ashram until India gained independence. Even though the country got independence on 15th August 1947, Gandhiji could not return to the Ashram as he was assassinated on 30th January 1948.
Sabarmati ashram now houses a Museum called Gandhi Smarak Sangrahalaya and is commonly called as Gandhi Museum. It is among the most visited Indian museums.
Other important buildings in the Ashram are listed below, Hridaya Kunj is the cottage where Gandhiji lived. Nandini is an old ashram guest house which is open to the visitors for stay. Vinoba Kutir is the cottage where Acharya Vinoba Bhave stayed, which is also known as Mira Kutir after Gandhiji’s disciple Mirabehn stayed here. Upasana Mandir is an open-air prayer ground in the Ashram premises. Magan Niwas is another building where the ashram manager, Maganlal Gandhi, who was Gandhiji”s cousin, lived.
Sabarmati Ashram is a must see place to visit in Ahmadabad. It’s a place to know about Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation, a title given to him by by Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was a great freedom fighter and the Head of State and Government (Prime Minister) of the Provisional Government of Free India (i.e. Undivided India – which included the whole of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh) till his death. He was the only person who held that office. This post was abolished on his death.
How Do I Go to Sabarmati Ashram?
Ahmedabad is well connected by roads to the other parts of India. Delhi to Mumbai National Highway, NH 8, one of the most busiest Highways in the Indian sub-continent, passes through Ahmedabad. Delhi to Chennai National Highway, NH 48, passes through Ahmedabad. NH 47 connecting Bamanbore to Nagpur passes through this city. National Highway 64 connects the historic city of Dandi with Ahmedabad.
Sabarmati Junction railway station is the nearest railway station to the Ashram at Sabarmati at around 3 kilometers away. Ahmedabad Junction railway station is the nearest major railway station at around 6.8 kilometers distance, which is well connected to the rest of the country. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport at Ahmedabad is the nearest airport to Sabarmati Ashram.