On this day in history, Mohandas K. Gandhi was killed at the age of 78 by a Hindu nationalist who opposed some of Gandhi’s policies, including his doctrine of nonviolence (his opposition to which the shooter demonstrated rather graphically).
Gandhi was a leader of Indian nationalism in British-ruled India. Advocating nonviolent civil disobedience, Gandhi inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world. He is now commonly known by the honorific Mahatma (Sanskrit: “high-souled”, “venerable”), which was first applied to him in 1914 in South Africa.
Gandhi had a wide influence and many followers, including Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1959, MLK wrote an account of a trip he took to India (“My Trip to the Land of Gandhi”) in which he discusses the intersection of Gandhi’s beliefs and his own. You can read the text here.