Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Transcripts - Nationalisminindia
BY: SAKSHI KATARIA
THE FREEDOM WORLD WAR
The First World War played an important role in shaping India’s
freedom struggle and developing new modes of struggle in
the following ways :
o Increase in Defense expenditure due to the war led to the increase in
taxes, custom duties, prices and the introduction of war loans.
o During the war, prices increased dramatically (almost doubled) which
led to extreme hardships,
o Poverty and forced recruitments in the army made people hostile to
the British rule.
o During 1918–19 and 1920–21, food shortages due to the failure of crops
and famines and epidemics, that took a heavy toll of life, created
resentment among the people of India against the foreign rule.
The idea of satyagraha emphasised the power of truth and the need to search for
It suggested that if the cause was true, if the struggle was against injustice, then
physical force was not necessary to fight the oppressor.
Mahatma Gandhi believed satyagraha could unite all Indians.
Application of Gandhi’s Satyagraha :
o In 1916 Gandhiji organised a satyagraha against the oppressive plantation
system in Champaran (Bihar).
o In 1917 Gandhiji led a satyagraha in Kheda district of Gujarat, demanding
relaxation of the revenue tax owing to the poverty experienced by the farmers
because of the outbreak of plague and crop failure.
o In 1918 Gandhiji organised a Satyagraha against the cotton mill worker in
THE ROWLATT ACT
In 1919 The Rowlatt Act was passed by the British Government.
This act gave the government enormous powers for repressing political activities and
allowed detention of political prisoners for two years without any trail.
o On 6th April, 1919 Gandhi started the non-violent civil disobedience movement for
opposing the Rowlatt Act with a nation-wide hartal.
o Shops were closed down, rallies were organised and rail workshop workers went on
o On 10th April, 1919 in Amritsar widespread attacks on banks, post offices and railway
stations took place.
British's Response :
o Government brutally repressed the nationalists.
o Martial law was imposed and General Dyer took command.
JALLIANWALA BAGHMASSACRE 13 APRIL 1919
A number of people had assembled at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar for
attending the annual Baisakhi fair. General Dyer surrounded the park and opened
fire on the crowd, killing hundreds of people.
Aftermath of Jallianwala Bagh Massacre :
o Crowds took to the streets in many north Indian towns. Strikes, clashes with
the police and attacks on government buildings were extensively witnessed.
o The British used brutal repression, seeking to humiliate and terrorise people.
People were flogged and villages were bombed.
o This violence forced Gandhi to stop the movement.
NON COOPERATION MOVEMENT
Non-Cooperation movement began in January 1921.
Various social groups participated in this Movement.
Each social groups had their own aspiration but all fought together for the Swaraj but
the term meant differently from group to group.
o Khilafat issue :
After the Rowlatt satyagraha Mahatma Gandhi felt to launch a more broad based
movement. So he took up the Khilafat issue. The First World War had ended with
the defeat of Ottoman Turkey. There were rumors that a harsh treaty would be
imposed on the Khilafat. So a Khilafat Committee was formed in March 1919 to
defend the Khilafat’s temporal powers.
o Rowlatt Act :
The dissatisfaction from the Rowlatt Act and the failure of the Rowlatt Satyagraha.
o Jallianwala Bagh :
The atrocious killing of hundreds of innocent people by the British at Jallianwala
Bagh had made the Indian masses resentful towards the British rule.
o Surrendered government titles,
o Boycotted civil services, army, police, courts and legislative councils, school, and
o And if the British Government used repression , a full civil disobedience campaign
would be launched.
o Few Congress members were not in support of the idea of boycotting the
council elections as they wanted to bring about changes in the system by being
o C.R. Das and Motilal Nehru formed the Swaraj Party within the Congress to
argue for a return to council politics.
o Some leaders feared the movement to turn violent.
Some Important Events During Non-Cooperation Movement :
o Khilafat Committee was formed with leaders such as Muhammad Ali and
Shaukat Ali in March 1919 in Bombay.
o Mahatma Gandhi in the Calcutta session of the Congress, convinced other
leaders of the need to start a non-cooperation movement in support of Swaraj
in September 1919.
o Non-cooperation programme adopted by the Congress on December, 1920 at the
Congress session at Nagpur.
o The Movement in the Towns :
Steps taken :
• The students left government controlled schools and colleges, headmasters and
• Lawyers gave up their legal practices and the council elections were boycotted in
most provinces except Madras.
• Foreign goods were boycotted, liquor shops picketed and foreign cloth burnt in huge
• The import of foreign cloth halved , its value dropping from Rs 102 crore to Rs 57
• Merchants and traders refused to trade in foreign goods or finance foreign trade.
• Production of Indian textile mills and handlooms went up.
Obstructions Faced :
• Khadi cloth was more expensive than mass than mass produced mill cloth and poor
people could not afford to buy it.