Incarcerated for their involvement in criminal acts ranging from robbery to dacoity and murder, 82 inmates of Thane jail will on Tuesday pen down the teachings and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi in an examination to be conducted by Gandhian organizations in the prison premises.
Altogether, 182 prisoners have come forward to appear for the Gandhi peace examination in two phases. The test is based on Gandhi’s books My Experiments with Truth and Gandhi Bapu in English, Hindi, Marathi and Gujarati. The first phase of the Gandhi examination will be held on Tuesday with 82 jail inmates. The rest will appear in the second phase.
The Gandhi peace examination is a part of different programmes jointly organized by the Bombay Sarvodaya Mandal, Gandhi Study Center and Birla College, Kalyan, to celebrate 100 years of the Mahatma’s first satyagraha throughout the year. “The aim behind conducting the Gandhi peace examination is to evoke a great sense of regret in the minds of prisoners and make them realize the power of non-violence. Even if 10 per cent prisoners change their way of thinking after writing the examination and learn to adopt the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi, it will contribute greatly to society,” T.R.K. Somaiya of Bombay Sarvodaya Mandal told the Hindustan Times.
In a two-week-long exercise before the examination, the prisoners were made to attend orientation lectures that explained Gandhian thoughts of non-violence and truth. Sir Richard Attenborough’s internationally acclaimed film Gandhi also shown to the prisoners to give them more of an insight into the life of the Mahatma.
The prisoners will have to complete the exam — 80 objective questions worth 80 marks — in an hour. They will also be asked to give feedback on how the Gandhi examination benefited them. Awards and participation certificates will be given to all the prisoners. Let’s wish them luck!