Expected to sell for approximately Rs 60 to 80 lakh, the charkha was presented to American missionary Floyd A Puffer — a pioneer in Indian educational and industrial cooperatives, said a statement issued by the auction house mullocksauctions.co.uk.
“Puffer invented a bamboo plow which was adopted by Gandhi, and in return for his contribution to Indian life, Gandhi presented him with the spinning wheel which he used in prison,” said the statement.
The traditional charkha was bulky and difficult to move, so Gandhi devised this particular spinning wheel in jail, which was lighter, could be folded and had a handle for carrying, said the auction house.
“This would have been one of Gandhi’s most prized possessions as he devised the workings of it himself, it has impeccable provenance and is unquestionably the most important Gandhi artefact we ever had for sale,” said Mullocks’ specialist Richard Westwood Brookes.
The auction would be ‘the largest sale ever’ to be held, with over 60 artefacts, including important documents, photographs and books belonging to Gandhi, said Mullocks.