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World Briefing / India

Gandhi items fetch $1.8 million

March 06, 2009|Times Wire Reports

Mohandas Gandhi's eyeglasses and other items sold for $1.8 million at an auction that drew outrage from the Indian government, a last-minute reversal from the seller and a frenzy of bidding that was won by an Indian conglomerate that said the pacifist leader's things would be coming home.

The lot included Gandhi's wire-rim glasses, worn leather sandals, a pocket watch, a plate and the brass bowl from which he ate his last meal.

The Indian government had protested the sale, saying the items should go back to India.

The U.S. Justice Department served an Indian court injunction on the auction house, blocking it from releasing the items, while the owner, Los Angeles-based collector James Otis, said he no longer wanted to sell them.

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