Mahatma Gandhi was the leader of India's non-violent independence movement against British rule and in South Africa who advocated civil rights for Indians. Born in Porbandar, India, Gandhi studied law and united India against the British Raj through a peaceful form of civil disobedience. He was killed in 1948 by a fanatic, Nathuram Godse. Indian nationalist leader Gandhi (birth name – Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi) was born on October 2, 1869 in Porbandar, India, which was then part of the British Empire. Gandhi's father Karamchand Gandhi had served as a Diwan in Porbandar and other states in western India. His mother Putlibai was a religious woman who used to fast regularly. Young Gandhi was a shy, simple student who was so timid that he slept with the lights on even as a teenager. In the ensuing years, this teenager smoked, ate meat. Although Gandhi was interested in becoming a doctor, his father hoped that he would also become a government minister (diwan) and inspired him to enter the legal profession. In 1888, 18-year-old Gandhi left for London, England to study law. Upon his return to India in 1891, Gandhi learned that his mother had died only a few weeks earlier. He struggled to establish his footing as a lawyer. In his first courtroom case, he became nervous when it came time to cross-examine a witness. He immediately fled the courtroom after reimbursing his client's legal fees.

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