Sex life of Mahatma Gandhi, Father of the nation, was always a discussion point among Indians and foreigner’s alike. Gandhi, in his book, ‘My Experiments with Truth’ gave a glimpse of his ‘desires’. He wrote about him visiting a brothel in Mumbai and leaving the bedside of his dying father to have sex with wife Kasturba. But not much was in public about his experiments with women and sex.
A book ‘Gandhi: Naked Ambition’ claimed to reveal the hidden life of MK Gandhi. Quoting the pre-independence Prime Minister of the Indian state of Travancore the book went on to say that Gandhi was “a most dangerous, semi-repressed sex maniac”.
Published in the year 2012, the book claimed, “much of this (Gandhi’s sex life) material was known during his lifetime, but was distorted or suppressed after his death during the process of elevating Gandhi into the “Father of the Nation””
Below are some excerpts from the book talking about Gandhi’s experiment with women and sex:
- “Gandhi set up ashrams in which he began his first “experiments” with sex. Boys and girls were to bathe and sleep together, chastely but were punished for any sexual talk. Moreover, he segregated the men and women. Gandhi further advised that husbands should not be alone with their wives, and, when they felt passion, should take a cold bath”.
- “Sushila Nayar, the attractive sister of Gandhi’s secretary, used to sleep and bathe with Gandhi since girlhood. When challenged, he explained how he ensured decency was not offended”.“While she is bathing I keep my eyes tightly shut,” he said, “I do not know … whether she bathes naked or with her underwear on. I can tell from the sound that she uses soap.”
- “Following Kasturba’s death, Mahatma used to have more women around him. He used to oblige women to sleep with him whom – according to his segregated ashram rules – were forbidden to sleep with their own husbands”.
- “Much explicit material has been destroyed but tantalising remarks in Gandhi’s letters remain, such as: “Vina’s sleeping with me might be called an accident. All that can be said is that she slept close to me.”
Gandhi complained of experiencing “involuntary discharges” more frequently since his return to India. He had an almost magical belief in the power of semen: “One who conserves his vital fluid acquires unfailing power,” he said.
- In 1947, Sushila (33) was replaced by Gandhi’s 18-year-old grandniece Manu in the bed of the 77-year-old Gandhi. “We both may be killed by the Muslims,” he told her, “and must put our purity to the ultimate test so that we know that we are offering the purest of sacrifices, and we should now both start sleeping naked.”
- As per Gandhi, a Brahmachari was “One who never has any lustful intention, who, by constant attendance upon God, has become proof against conscious or unconscious emissions, who is capable of lying naked with naked women, however beautiful, without being in any manner whatsoever sexually excited … who is making daily and steady progress towards God and whose every act is done in pursuance of that end and no other.”
- Eighteen-year-old Abha, the wife of Gandhi’s grandnephew Kanu Gandhi, rejoined Gandhi’s entourage in the freedom struggle in 1947. By the end of August, he was sleeping with both Manu and Abha at the same time. Despite her having been his constant companion in his last years, family members, tellingly, removed Manu from the scene. Gandhi had written to his son: “I have asked her to write about her sharing the bed with me,” but the protectors of his image were eager to eliminate this element of the great leader’s life.
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