Mahatma Gandhi was one of the most charismatic leaders in Indian history. He lived from 1869 -1948, when he was assassinated by Nathuram Godse while climbing the steps to address a prayer meeting. Gandhi was the political and spiritual leader of India during its Independence Movement away from the British Empire. He strongly believed in and practiced non-violent forms of protest, including fasting, and inspired forms of peaceful protest worldwide. In India he is seen as the Father of the Nation and his birthday, October 2nd, is a national holiday. Internationally, October 2nd is marked as the Day of Non-Violence.
As soon as he was killed, devotees began collecting documents, books, manuscripts, personal relics, photographs and other artifacts from Ghandi's life to make an historic collection. In 1961, the current museum was inaugurated in the current location opposite the Samadhi of Mahatma Gandhi, a memorial at the place where he was cremated on the Raj Ghat.