The Making of the National Movement: The National Movement was a political movement that aimed to unify the Indian subcontinent under a single, sovereign state. The movement was led by a number of Indian political leaders, including Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Muhammad Ali Jinnah. The National Movement was opposed by the British Raj, which controlled the subcontinent at the time.
The movement gained momentum in the 1920s, when Gandhi began leading a series of non-violent protests against the British Raj. These protests, known as the Non-cooperation Movement, culminated in the mass civil disobedience campaign of 1930-31. The National Movement was further strengthened by the establishment of the Indian National Congress in 1885. The Congress, which initially campaigned for greater Indian participation in the British Raj, eventually came to support the goal of full independence for the subcontinent. The National Movement was ultimately successful in achieving its goal of independence for the subcontinent, which was realized in 1947.
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Let us go through some questions on The Making of the National Movement here.
Name some of the political associations that were formed in the 1870s and 1880s. What were their goals?
Political associations formed in the 1870s and 1880s mostly by Indian lawyers educated in Britain. Some of these Associations were, the Indian National Congress, the Poona Sarvajanik Sabha, the Indian Association, the Madras Mahajan Sabha and the Bombay Presidency Association.
These associations functioned in different parts of the country, with a common goal for all the people of India. The common goal was an independent India, empowered to take decisions regarding its own governance.
What was the Ilbert Bill?
The Ilbert Bill was a bill introduced in 1883 for British India by Lord Ripon. The Bill gave Indian judges and magistrates the power to try British offenders in criminal cases at the District level. The introduction of the bill led to intense opposition in Britain and from British settlers in India. The Bill played on racial tensions. White opposition forced the government to withdraw the bill. T
his enraged the Indians. The bitter controversy deepened antagonism between the British and Indians and was a prelude to the formation of the Indian National Congress the following year. The event highlighted the racial attitudes of the British in India. The need for an all-India organisation of educated Indians seemed necessary after the Ilbert Bill controversy
What brought the moderates and radicals together?
In 1905 Viceroy Curzon partitioned Bengal which was the biggest province of British India and included Bihar and parts of Orissa. The government separated East Bengal and merged it with Assam.
The British stated that Bengal was divided for administrative convenience; where as the real reason was to restrict the influence of Bengali politicians and to split the Bengali people.
It was this division of Bengal that brought the moderates and radicals together. All the leaders opposed the division. Large public meetings and demonstrations were organised and novel methods of mass protest developed.
Describe the Rowlatt Satyagraha.
In 1919 Gandhiji gave a call for a Satyagraha against the Rowlatt Act, passed by the British. The Act restricted the freedom of expression and strengthened police powers. Mahatma Gandhi, Mohammad Ali Jinnah and others strongly opposed this Act.
April 6th 1919, was observed as a day opposing the Act. It was a non-violent opposition.
Satyagraha Sabhas were set up all over India against the Rowlatt Act. It was the first all-India struggle against the British government.
What did the Khilafat movement support?
The Khilafat movement was a political campaign launched mainly by Muslims in South Asia to influence the British government and to protect the Ottoman Empire after World War I.
In 1920 the movement gained force after the Treaty of Sèvres, which solidified the partitioning of the Ottoman Empire. Indian Muslims were keen that the Khalifa be allowed to retain control over Muslim sacred places in the erstwhile Ottoman Empire. The leaders of the Khilafat agitation, Mohammad Ali and Shaukat Ali, now wished to initiate a full-fledged Non-Cooperation Movement. Gandhiji supported the movement.
What made Gandhiji call off the non-cooperation movement?
As the Non-Cooperation Movement turned violent in some places Gandhiji called off the movement. The main incidence that made Gandhiji call off the movement was Chauri Chaura incidence. Here the peasants set fire to a police station and 22 policemen died. The setting of the police station was in retaliation to the police firing at a peaceful demonstration by the peasants.