BOMBAY, India, May 5, 1930 (UP) -- Strong forces of British and Indian troops were ordered mustered for any emergency in the chief cities of India today as the Mahatma M. K. Gandhi was put in a British jail -- his most dangerous battlefront in the Nationalist campaign for independence.
Bells tolled in Bombay, signifying a Nationalist call for a day of mourning as the man whom India's millions call the "Great Soul" was placed in Yeroda jail in Poona for an indefinite term. No formal charge was announced.
Hartals-days of cessation of work which are tantamount to paralyzing strikes-were declared in many cities where all shops were tightly shuttered and barred. Only Muslims and some factor workers hesitated to join the Bombay hartal, which was started under the eyes of heavy patrols of soldiers.
Troops and armored cars patrolled Ahmedahad, where a hartal paralyzed business; Peshawar was thronged by troops; the wife of the Mahatma led demonstrations at Jalapur where a hartal was declared; all business ceased at Navsari; the Surat district, where Gandhi was arrested, observed a day of mourning and processions and hartals were reported for various smaller centers.
Processions of independence volunteers swarmed thru Delhi today, protesting the arrest. The mob threatened to storm the doors of European banks, which were heavily guarded.
"I hope India will show here mettle and give a fitting reply to the government's unwarranted section," Mrs. Gandhi said when informed of her husband's arrest.
Congress leaders advised the people to remain calm but many small noisy processions were organized and paraded the Bombay streets. Pickets were established in Bombay to enforce the hartal in sections where it was not joined voluntarily by shopkeepers and workers.
Censorship is effective on press messages to and from India. Shortly after the arrest, the cable company informed the United Press that a message to its Delhi correspondent concerning developments in the Indian Nationalist movement had not been delivered under instructions of the censor.
The arrest of Gandhi at the small village of Ashram Karadi, near Surat, was dramatic but without any demonstration on the part of independence workers.
When Gandhi was put aboard a train he was not taken near the town station.
The ordinance of 1827, under which Gandhi was arrested, said that reasons of state occasionally render it necessary to place under personal restraint individuals against whom there may not be sufficient grounds for judicial proceedings.