Boer is an Afrikaans word for Farmer. The Southern African Kingdoms of Orange Free State, Transvaal (Now South Africa) and to some extent Natal were known as Boer Republics. Transvaal was rich in gold, so British plotted to overthrow Boer government.⁣

The two Boer wars were fought between the British Empire and the two independent Boer republics, during the 1880 to 1902 period.⁣

In the First Boer War, the British lost the Transvaal and the Boers of Transvaal got freedom, but in the second Boer war which lasted from 1899 to 1902, converted these republics into British Colonies. These colonies later became part of Union of South Africa.⁣

During Second Boer war 1899, Gandhi wished to support the British as an assistant superintendent in a hope that the conditions of Indians would improve later. He set up by organizing 1100 volunteers and served in the Indian Ambulance Corps.⁣

According to Arthur Herman, Gandhi wanted to disprove the imperial British stereotype that Hindus were not fit for “manly” activities involving danger and exertion, unlike the Muslim “martial races”.⁣

This ambulance did not continue throughout the war. In 1901 his family returned to India. Gandhi established a legal practice in Mumbai and started taking interest in the Indian National Movement. But in 1902, he received a Telegram from Durban and returned there.⁣

Gandhi was bestowed with a title of ‘kaiser-i-Hind’ by British for his work in Boer war. This title was given up by Gandhi after the Jallianwala Bagh massacre in 1919.⁣

He wrote in the autobiography:⁣
When the war was declared, my personal sympathies were all with the Boers, but my loyalty to the British rule drove me to participation with the British in that war. I felt that, if I demanded rights as a British citizen, it was also my duty, as such to participate in the defence of the British Empire. so I collected together as many comrades as possible, and with very great difficulty got their services accepted as an ambulance corps⁣.