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J. C. Kumarappa

J. C. Kumarappa is a freedom fighter whose High Thinking & Simple Living has many lessons for today's world. This platform is dedicated to this forgotten Soul, who was born in Tamilnadu; brought up in Mumbai; studied in Western world; lived for Gandhi; and died for the Common man of India. His book 'Economy of Permanence' pioneers the holistic thinking connecting Ecology & Economy.

After 2 decades of communicating the British immorality & injustice to the Indian masses, Gandhiji finally hit upon the raw nerve that woke up the Indian masses instantly, from their slumber - by telling the facts that proved that the financial decisions of the Colonizers were not made in the interest of India. While this message was highlighted earlier too in many occasions, it was in 1929 that Gandhi happened to read J. C. Kumarappa's post graduate dissertation 'Public Finance and India's Poverty' - which changed the direction of Gandhiji's tone in his communication to the masses. 

In 1931, with J. C. Kumarappa as its convenor, the select committee appointed to scrutinize the details of the financial obligations between India and Britain upto that time, published its report - which became the real ammunition for Gandhiji to refute the claims made by the British that their financial decisions were in the best interest of the Indian citizens.

Thus, J. C. Kumarappa brought in the economic dimension into the Freedom struggle which became the real ammunition that triggered mass unrest across India.

Till date, there's no better definition for the word 'Swadeshi' has been uttered than the one given by J. C. Kumarappa in 1934 - SWADESHI IS THE BEST UTILIZATION OF THE WHOLE OF THE MANPOWER OF INDIA. It's not a catchy phrase, but surely is a beacon of light to segregate the right ones from the not-so-right ones.

To get started on the journey of knowing J. C. Kumarappa, the following 2 books would come in handy:

  • The Web of Freedom: J. C. Kumarappa and Gandhi’s Struggle for Economic Justice (by Deepak Malghan and Venu Madhav Govindu)
  • Gandhian Engagement with Capital: Perspectives of J C Kumarappa (by Chaitra Redkar)

(... to be continued)