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BPSE-141: Gandhi and the Contemporary World

BPSE-141: Gandhi and the Contemporary World

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2022-23

If you are looking for BPSE-141 IGNOU Solved Assignment solution for the subject Gandhi and the Contemporary World, you have come to the right place. BPSE-141 solution on this page applies to 2022-23 session students studying in BAPSH, BAG courses of IGNOU.

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Assignment Code: BPSE-141/ASST/TMA/2022-23

Course Code: BPSE-141

Assignment Name: Gandhi and the Contemporary World

Year: 2022-2023

Verification Status: Verified by Professor


Answer all questions in the three Assignments and submit them together.



Answer the following in about 500 words each. 20x2


Q1) What is new the concept of development? Critically examine Gandhi’s thoughts on development.

Ans) Development has come under more general consideration. The Fourth King of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, first suggested that we look at "Gross National Happiness" as the best indicator of development rather than the more traditional Gross Domestic Product in 1972. He emphasised the necessity to approach ways of advancement holistically and to give non-economic factors of human wellbeing equal weight.


The notions of inclusive growth and sustainable development subsequently gained popularity, especially in the West, as a result of the widening gap and division between the nations of the North and the South. Two crucial ideas are included in the definition of sustainable development provided by the Brundtland Commission the premise that the environment's capacity to meet existing and future demands is constrained by the state of technology and social organisation, in particular the idea that the basic needs of the world's impoverished should be prioritised.


Gandhi’s Vision and Critique of Development

Gandhi did not create a concrete development plan, but he did present a philosophy of life that may lead to progress. His relational worldview emphasised the importance of the interaction and connectivity of the universe's constituent parts. His entire worldview rested on the insight that no human could see himself/herself as the only steward of the earth and all of its resources. Gandhi saw each day as a chance to achieve self-realization. Humans must deal with a myriad of issues that include chances and challenges since they are social beings who must live in society rather than isolation.


Gandhi's life philosophy advocates for a different type of development that is in tune with the environment and the eco-system. Gandhi's theory of development covers all facets of life, making it impossible to separate the political, economic, social, and spiritual, but in order to analyse it simply, it must be broken down into its component parts.

Gandhi's economic beliefs differ from orthodox ones. Most economists are materialistic. Gandhi knew the distinction between economic and moral advancement and believed true progress was moral growth. Gandhian economics emphasises creating and maintaining a nonviolent economy. Gandhi had novel ideas to achieve these aims, including voluntary reduction of demands and mass manufacturing. Gandhi's vision of development can replace the western model, which emphasises human demands and exploits urbanisation and industrialization as its primary instruments, resulting in atomized, ego-centric persons lacking spiritual ambitions and ignoring community spirit.


Gandhi's main strength rested in the fact that he introduced the concept of mass production, which turned the order of mass production on its head and provided a practical and logical model. The extensive utilisation of labour in such a decentralised economy, as opposed to its replacement by technology, could effectively address some of the issues plaguing the current system, such as unemployment, automation, alienation, and large-scale industrialization. The backbone of such a decentralised economy, in which the village would serve as the fundamental unit, would be the local resources used to generate Swadeshi items.


Gandhi's idea of a decentralised polity, which is essential to his entire plan, is also included in his model of development. Marxist and liberal political systems have two significant flaws. One is that the system of political representation does not adequately represent popular opinion. Two, the system actually became top-down, casting doubt on their claim to democracy despite their insistence that everyone benefits from the system from the ground up. Gandhi, who stood out for the average man, was well aware of these restrictions. The general populace would effectively regain control of the situation thanks to this.


Q2) Critically examine the different non-violent movements led by Mahatma Gandhi.

Ans) Nonviolent movements/direct actions are defined by two oxymorons: disruption and discipline. Mass disruption is non-violent resistance's most successful and popular tactic. Non-cooperation and large-scale civil disobedience can call attention to unjust laws.


Bhoodan Movement-1940s

Gandhi's own follower Acharya Vinoba Bhave started to spread the idea of "bhoodan" in the late 1940s and early 1950s. It would be incorrect to assume that Bhoodan is just interested in acquiring and distributing land, despite the fact that its goal was to secure land for India's landless peasants. This campaign was intended to mark the beginning of the Sarvodaya society's ascent toward an all-encompassing socioeconomic revolution a nonviolent constructive programme for changing India's social structure through a profound shift in ideals.


New Farmers’ Movements-1980s

When the New Farmers movement began, Indian agriculture was in utter disorder. It started when trade terms were adverse to agriculture, agricultural revenue was declining, input prices were rising above farmers' means, etc. When the Shetkari Sanghatana organisation requested fair rates for onions, it all began in Maharashtra. Later, Uttar Pradesh's Bharatiya Kisan Union and Karnataka's Rajya Raitha Sangha both adopted it. The disparities among the farmer organisations checkedmated the movements from becoming a significant force in Indian politics, despite the fact that they began virtually simultaneously.


Chipko Movement-1973

The non-violent Chipko Movement was born in the Garhwal Himalayan mountain range, which is now part of the state of Uttarakhand. Massive floods in the Alaknanda Valley region in 1973 devastated homes and other property. The women noticed the axe-wielding workers one day. Commercial contractors had dispatched these labour to chop the trees. In their outcry, the women pledged to defend the trees. Small groups of women hugged the trees and kept watch constantly to stop the felling. The movement was greatly successful and was led by Sundarlal Bahuguna, Gauri Devi, and Gunga Devi, along with their co-workers.


Jungle Bachao Andolan-1970s

The tribals of Bihar protested in large numbers when the government decided to replace the natural sal forest in the 1970s with highly prized teak. The movement began in Bihar and then moved to places like Odisha and Jharkhand.


Silent Valley Movement-1970s-1980s

In the Palakkad district of Kerala, an evergreen tropical forest known as Silent Valley was the target of a social movement that was begun in 1973. The protest was intended to prevent a hydroelectric project from flooding the valley.


Narmada Bachao Andolan-1985

The "Narmada Bachao Andolan," also known as the "Save the Narmada Movement," was primarily an effort to stop the unruly and reckless trend of growth. It was a crusade to guarantee the affected people of the dam building received justice. The Sardar Sarovar Project, the largest dam to be built on the Narmada River, was the main focus of the Andolan. A pioneering non-violent fight to seek justice for the people, the struggle began in 1985 and relied on hunger strikes, solidarity marches, and media attention to raise awareness of the problem.


Jan Lokpal Bill-Anti Corruption Movement by Anna Hazare-2011

On April 5, 2011, anti-corruption campaigner Anna Hazare started a hunger strike in Jantar Mantar in New Delhi. The entire country rallied behind him. Sharad Pawar, the minister of agriculture, left the committee of ministers tasked with assessing the draught Jan Lokpal bill as a result of the movement. The Citizen's Ombudsman Bill, popularly known as the Jan Lokpal Bill, is an anti-corruption law proposed by Indian civil society activists who want to appoint a Jan Lokpal, an impartial body to look into cases of corruption.


Nirbhaya Movement-2012

People who were adamant about saying that enough is enough reacted fiercely to the 2012 Delhi Gang Rape. Following the tragedy, thousands of people demonstrated in the streets around the nation. Tens of thousands of people signed a petition criticising the occurrence, and the movement caused a sensation on social media as individuals changed their display pictures to black dots. The federal government and numerous states declared a number of actions to guarantee the safety of women in light of the movement.



Answer the following questions in about 250 words each. 10x3


Q1) Gandhian views on sustainable development.

Ans) Development has started being viewed in a holistic perspective. As early as 1972, the Fourth King of Bhutan, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, proposed that we should consider the ‘Gross National Happiness’ as the best index of development instead of relying on the usual Gross Domestic Product.


He emphasised the need to take a holistic approach towards methods of progress and give equal importance to non-economic aspects of wellbeing of the people. This new approach subsequently became a part of the popular discourse on viable model of development. Subsequently, in the context of growing disparity and divide between the countries of North and South, sustainable development and the idea of inclusive growth became popular concepts, particularly in the West.


The Brundtland Commission’s definition of Sustainable development contains within it two key concepts:

  1. The concept of ‘needs,’ in particular, the essential needs of the world’s poor, which should be given priority.

  2. The idea of limitations imposed by the state of technology and social organization on the environment’s ability to meet present and future needs.

According to the Commission the major objective of development is satisfaction of human needs and aspirations. Thus, it reversed the earlier idea of economic growth based on GDP and per capita income. This idea was further fine-tuned by emphasising new notions of human development.


Q2) Why is Gandhi’s programme on social reforms based on duties rather than rights?

Ans) The conventional idea of a harmonious society holds that there should be no conflict and that everyone should get along. Along with democracy and the rule of law, fairness and justice are two elements of social harmony. It displays a fundamental worry that the general public shares. Social harmony is fundamentally a social idea that is rooted in social connections in the modern environment, where the state is largely responsible for safeguarding the welfare of its residents. It may promote a more adjusted theory and routine with regard to capable citizenship.


It would appear impossible because there is just too much animosity between nations and neighbours, most of it is brought on by a toxic mix of politicians who are utterly clueless and who are also greedy, envious, incompetent, and power-hungry. There is no remedy; the only thing a person can do is try to avoid such drawbacks because, if we all say, "I'm going to grab whatever I can!" then the end of humanity will be hastened. However, it does seem unjust to all other living forms that we are likely to take the entire planet with us, whether or not it is a good or bad thing.


Everything has to end. Mutual respect and understanding, communication, peace, freedom, fairness, justice, equality, and the absence of discrimination are all means of achieving social harmony. People's perceptions of fairness regarding wealth and income distribution, fiscal and taxation policy, employment opportunities, personal growth, the system for admitting students to higher education, the promotion of public servants, access to free healthcare, and free education are among the factors that make up this metric.


Q3) Highlight different environmental movements and its impacts on policy post-independence India.

Ans) A social or political movement for the protection of the environment or for bettering its condition is referred to as an environmental movement. Alternative names for the same thing include "green movement" and "conservation movement." The sustainable management of natural resources is favoured by environmental movements. The movements frequently emphasise the need to safeguard the environment through altering public policies. Ecology, health, and human rights are the focal points of many movements.


Chipko Movement

The goal was to protect Himalayan trees from loggers' axes. Mr. Bahuguna told the residents how trees prevent soil erosion, create rain, and give clean air. The ladies of Advani village in Tehri-Garhwal tied sacred thread around tree trunks and hugged them, thus the movement's name.


Narmada Bachao Andolan

Social movement against Narmada River dams. The campaign began as a protest against inadequate rehabilitation and resettlement for dam-displaced people. Later, the movement focused on preserving the valley's eco-systems. Activists wanted the dam's height reduced from 130m to 88m. The World Bank withdrew.


Save Silent Valley Movement

To safeguard Silent Valley from a hydroelectric plant. Kerala State Electricity Board planned a hydropower dam at Silent Valley. The Planning Commission approved the 25-crore project in February 1973. Many thought the project would drown 8.3 km2 of lush evergreen woodland. NGOs pushed the government to terminate the project.

Water Conservation Movement-2000

The water conservation movement protects conventional water-saving methods. State development projects superseded traditional knowledge systems. Movements offer alternatives to mainstream development patterns. Overusing groundwater for industry reduces water availability. Big water market lobbies' attempts to commodify water have changed 'nature and man's' symbiotic relationship. Indeed, neocolonial exploitation targets the poor.


Greenpeace Movement-1971

Greenpeace was started in 1969 to protest US nuclear weapons testing in Alaska. Greenpeace is the most successful nonviolent environmental group. By combining a philosophical underpinning, clear strategic planning, scientific research, political and legal research and lobbying, gutsy direct action, and outstanding media attention, it has accomplished tremendous advances for the organisation and the environment it seeks to safeguard. Greenpeace's basic concept was nonviolent direct action for the Earth.




Answer the following questions in about 100 words each. 6x5

Q1) Mahatma Gandhi views on Religion

Ans) Gandhi judged other religions from their perspective, not his. He embraced Hinduism's engagement with other religions, notably Christian beliefs, because he wanted to assimilate good from everywhere. He thought studying other religions was a vital obligation that didn't diminish one's own.


He believed all great religions should be respected innately, not just tolerated. He said a person who wanted to convert should be a good follower of his own faith instead. His early thoughts of Christianity were negative but changed when he read the New Testament and the Sermon on the Mount, which emphasised renunciation. He considered Parliament of Religions or International Fellowship of Religions could only be built on equality, a shared platform 


Q2) Mahatma Gandhi views on ‘Practice of Politics”.

Ans) Gandhiji reiterates the need of the general populace being involved in politics since, in his opinion, outside influence undermines national unity and the effective operation of government. Outside politics, in his opinion, pose a serious threat to national progress and togetherness. Until lawmakers or reformers become morally pure, he never accepts the reforming and unifying constitutional changes that would improve governance. Through behaviouralist, he highlights the moral and ethical nature of humanity. He claims that effective and competent people are necessary to rebel against the flawed system and bring about real government.


Gandhiji held the idea that obligations and rights are equal in this way. The person who one regards as a right for himself remains the same for everyone and also assumes responsibility for them. Where rights and obligations are intertwined, self-government exists, and political control appears to be ineffective. Our philosophies should not be materialistic, opulent, or goal-oriented toward self-gain; rather, all rights should be exercised for the benefit of everyone, with no regard for personal gain. Work that is done for one's own benefit leads to physio-social anomalies that pave the way for immoral social theories that lead to communalism and racial unrest. In this regard, religion-based politics is a politics of self-interest; the leader controls himself so as never to endanger his neighbours; in such politically moralistic regimes, no one pursues their own interests. Religion-based nations can only be built on the principles of humanity and morality. Gandhiji's fight for free self-government is realised here as the people and oneself become the government.


Q3) Gandhi’s idea of modern Civilisation

Ans) According to Gandhi, the core and fundamental reason India lost her independence was due to its people drifting away from their civilisation, which was primarily spiritual and moving instead toward the material wealth that the Western civilization was based on. He denounces the fratricidal behaviour of Indian princes, which provided the British with an opening to expand their military presence in this region. He also points to the hostility between Hindus and Muslims in India, who were constantly drawing their swords at one another, as a possible opening for the East India Company. As a result, the Indians established the conditions that allowed the Company to rule over India.


Gandhi was adamant that the cancer of slavery could be eradicated if Indians saw the brilliance of their civilisation and returned to their prehistoric roots. This was due to his conviction that the British were able to conquer India because of a period of Indian civilizational inferiority. According to Gandhi, the British did not bring about the modern trains, telegraph, western education, professions of lawyers and doctors, etc. to help the Indians, but rather to further their poverty.


Q4) What is Gandhian Ethics? Discuss with reference to its application in public service.

Ans) Ethics cannot be developed and maintained alone. Public opinion must play a big part in the environment that the heuristic process needs in order to succeed. It is necessary to identify and understand the dynamics of ethical behaviour in every sphere of endeavour. Efficiency, economy, effectiveness, equity and equal treatment, transparency, purity, neutrality, and perfection are among the qualities that are frequently regarded as being fundamental to how public life should be conducted. In a broader sense, ethics is concerned with moral obligation and duty.


In a democracy, the government should have faith in the people and encourage them to enjoy their freedoms. People who live in a true democracy do not learn from books or from the government, which is only their nominal master. The best teacher in a democracy is hard experience. Gandhi had unwavering faith in the inherent goodness and intelligence of the average person. A decent government should protect both freedom and welfare, promoting the overall well-being of the populace while imposing the fewest restrictions possible.


Gandhi wished to instil in his companions a sense of responsibility for all facets of living. No matter where one is, be it at home, work, or an ashram, absolute discipline must be observed. He did not see a difference between his private and public life. He insisted on a foolproof system of maintaining a thorough account in financial affairs as well. Since nothing in this world is truly ours, it is advisable to keep a thorough record of every Kori spent, even if the money is one's own.


Q5) Why is Pacifism important for conflict resolution?

Ans) Our daily lives are characterised by conflict. One of Gandhi's most important realisations was the value of expressing disagreement and his perspective on it. His understanding of the Gita holds that each individual possesses both truth and falsehood. In the literature on conflict, one finds a completely different interpretation of what international conflicts, civil wars, or wars mean. Even today, debate over the precise definition of the term "conflict" rules the world of international affairs.


Interpersonal and intrapersonal conflicts can arise between nations, people, groups, and other entities. Each conflict differs in its degree of intensity, how it is seen, how it is intended to be resolved, and the initiative used to do so. There are many tools available now to help in conflict analysis and identification. We also have enthusiastic people and groups who are drawn to mediating disputes between parties.


Before the First and Second World Wars, the world looked entirely different. Conflicts, players, and rivalry over the expansion of one's country borders existed. It was undoubtedly a time of sporadic wars between countries who were firmly committed to reality. It was no small feat that pacifism became a viable choice during those times, and its proponents played a respectable role in mediating confrontations. Quakers, religious pacifists, and absolute pacifists all made significant contributions to peace-making efforts.

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