Page:MKGandhi patriot.djvu/20

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5
IN SOUTH AFRICA

—handcuffed and guarded—the Passive Resisters of Johannesburg.

At the beginning of the year, there were over two hundred in the gaols at one time. Since then, there have been readjustments—a compromise—a promise made and evaded by he Government—a new Bill with new insufferable conditions—and once more, that patient, dignified, persistent Passive Resistance, so that the number threatens again to rise as high.

Johannesburg is very apathetic about it. The "colour prejudice," which is intensely strong with a majority of the white population, makes this spot a difficult battleground on which to fight out such issues. Then we have so many conflicting interests—trade considerations, political interests, racial antipathies, and no one knows what besides. So Johannesburg as a whole looks with apathy on the action of the Government, and with unconcern on the sufferings of the men—while those who pity and sympathise hardly dare speak their thoughts.

And so the Batteries thunder on—political greed, injustice, racial prejudice, and the selfishness of trade; the crushing Batteries of the Reef, hammering and pounding under their enormous