Address: Mercury Road
The offices used by M.K. Gandhi at 14 Mercury Lane were used for the administration of both the International Printing Press (IPP), founded in November 1898, and Indian Opinion, the newspaper he established in 1903. The International Printing Press was founded on 29 November 1898 at 113 Grey Street, alongside the Natal Indian Congress hall. The press was owned by Viyavarik Madanjit, a Mumbai-born school teacher, and it provided the essential services of printing in vernacular Indian languages. The I.P.P. was founded on the radical idea of worker ownership, and employees were paid a share of profits instead of a salary. At first the press printed mainly pamphlets, invitations and programmes on the used press Mandanjit purchased with English type, and the Gujarati, Hindi and Tamil types ordered from India. At the launch of I.P.P. Rev Lancelot Booth commented that a press “in any community marked a distinct step in their progress”.
When the Transvaal government introduced significant restrictions on the civil rights of the Indian immigrant community following the South African War (1899-1902), Gandhi took steps to publish details of police powers of warrantless search, seizures and arrests. All Indians in the Transvaal were also required to carry identification and registration cards at all times, an extension of pass laws for Africans. With the support of the Natal Indian Congress (NIC), his clients and other notable Indians, Gandhi and a small staff published a newspaper to document the constraints imposed on Indian civil rights and educate the white South African community about problems facing Indian people.
Together with Madanjit Viyavaharik and the first editor, Mansukhlal Nazar, who was the secretary of the NIC, Gandhi prepared the initial issue of Indian Opinion on 4 and 5 June; the newspaper was distributed on 6 June 1903. Indian Opinion was published in Gujarati, Hindi, Tamil and English. The pages of Indian Opinion provide a valuable historical record of the disparities Indians suffered in South Africa, and documented the political life of the Indian community. Gandhi’s experience with the publication and the political struggle in South Africa proved a major experience for him and helped him in his work for the Indian independence movement. He commented, “Satyagraha would have been impossible without Indian Opinion”. In 1904, Gandhi relocated the publishing office to his settlement in Phoenix.
International Printing Press namahhovisi e-Indian Opinion
Amahhovisi ayesetshenziswa uM. K. Gandhi kwanombolo 14 Mercury Lane ayesetshenziselwa ukuphathwa kwe-International Printing Press (IPP), eyayisungulwe ngoNovember 1898, kanye ne-Indian Opinion, iphephandaba ayeliqale ngonyaka ka-1903. I-International Printing Press yasungulwa ngo-29 Novembea 1898 kwanombolo 113 Grey Street, eceleni kwehholo leNatal Indian Congress. Le mishini yokugaya iphepha kwakungeka Viyavarik Madanjit, uthisha owayezalelwe eMumbai, kanti yenza umsebenzi obalulekile wokugaya amaphepha abhalwe ngezilimi zomdabu zaseNdiya. I-IPP yasungulelwa phezu kwesisekelo somqondo owawehluke ngokumangalisayo ngaleso sikhathi, umqondo wokuba abanikazi kube ngabasebenzi, ngenxa yalokhu abasebenzi babekhokhelwa ingxenye yenzuzo esikhundleni sokuba banikwe umholo. Ekuqaleni, leli phephandaba laligaya ama-pamphlets, izimemo kanye nezinhlelo emshinini osebenzile uMandanjit ayewuthenge wokubhala isiNgisi, nowohlobo olubhala iGujarati, Hindi kanye neTamil eyayi-odwe eNdiya. Emcimbini wokwethulwa ngokusemthethweni i-IPP uMfu. Lancelot Booth waphawula ukuthi umshini wokugaya iphepha “kunanoma imuphi umphakathi usho igxathu elibalulekile kwinqubekela phambili yalowo mphakathi”.
Ngesikhathi uhulumeni waseTransvaal uqala ukubeka imithetho eqinile ephuca amalungelo umphakathi wamaNdiya okufika kulandela impi yaseNgizimu Afrika (South African War) (1899-1902), uGandhi washicilela imininingwane ngamagunya amaphoyisa okusesha okungadingi kugunyazwa, ukushaqa impahla nokubopha. Wonke amaNdiya aseTransvaal kwakudingeka ukuba aphathe umazisi kanye namakhadi okubhalisa ngazo zonke izikhathi, okwakufana nemithetho yamapasi kwabaMnyama. Ngokwesekwa yi-Natal Indian Congress (NIC), amakhasimende akhe kanye namanye amaNdiya anohlonze, uGandhi kanye nezinye izisebenzi ezincane bashicilela iphephandaba elalibhala ngokuncisheka/ngonswinyo olwalubhekiswe emalungelweni amaNdiya kanye nokufundiswa komphakathi wabaMhlophe waseNingizmu Afrika ngezinkinga ezazibhekene namaNdiya.
Behlanganyele uMadanjit Viyavarik kanye nomhleli wokuqala, uMansukhlal Nazar, owayengunobhala weNIC, uGandhi walungisa ushicilelo lokuqala le-Indian Opinion ngomhla ziyi-4 no-5 kuJuni; iphephandaba lasatshalaliswa ziyi-6 Juni 1903. I-Indian Opinion yashicilelwa ngesiGujarati, Hindi, Tamil kanye nesiNgisi. Amakhasi e-Indian Opinion anikeza amarekhodi omlando obalulekile wokungalingani amaNdiya ayekuthola eNingizimu Afrika, wase ebhala ngempilo yezombusazwe yomphakathi wamaNdiya. Isipiliyoni sikaGandhi ngokushicilela kanye nomzabalazo wezepolitiki eNingizimu Afrika waba isipiliyoni esikhulu kuyena futhi samsiza emsebenzini wakhe womzabalazo wokukhululeka kwamaNdiya. Waphawula ngokuthi, “i-Satyagraha beyingeke ibekhona ngaphandle kwe-Indian Opinion”. Ngo 1904, uGandhi wathuthela amahhovisi okushicilela endaweni yakhe esePhoenix.