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Civil Disobedience Movement, RTCs and Poona Pact

1. 1924

1923 Next elections took place. / 1919 were boycotted by Congress.
/ Bhagat Singh and Militant nationalism.
/ Simon Commission,
/ Nehru report of 1928
/ Lahor session of 1929
/ CDM 1930-31.

/ 1921 MN Roy founded CPI in Tashkend, USSR.

2. Vaikom Satyagraha (1924):

It was organised by the Kerala Provincial Congress Committee (KPCC) against untouchability and ban on temple entry for harijans.

3. 1922-24 Debate within Congress

Feb 1924, Gandhi was released from jail and Congress witnessed an intensive debate over the upcoming 1924 elections. Swarajist (Pro-Changers) and No-changers.

In 1922 Swarajist led by C R Das and Motilal Nehru argued to contest upcoming elections. They formed Congress Khilafat Swarajy party in 1922 with C R Das as its president and Motilal Nehru as its secretary.
No Changers included Rajendra Prasad, Sardar Vallabhai Patel, Maulana Azad – they were close followers of Gandhi and argued for continuing the constructive social work initiated during the non cooperation movement. They rejected the idea of contesting the 1924 elections.
Gandhi didn’t wanted Congress to split again and said that those who want to contest elections, can do so.
Swarajist formed Congress Khilafat Swaraj Party (SP) under C R Das and Motilal Nehru and contested 1924 elections.
1924 – C R Das became mayor of Calcutta and appointed SC Bose as CEO of Calcutta Corporation.
Swarajist won 42 of 101 elected seats in Central Leg Assembly and in 1925 succeeded in electing Vitthalbhai Patel as 1st Indian Speaker of Leg Assembly.
Chitta Ranjan Das died in 1925.
Responsivists – included MMM, LLR, N C Kelkar were more concerned about ‘Hindu interests’ and accused Motilal Nehru of being anti Hindu, favouring Cow Slaughter etc.

4. 1924 Emergence of Militant Nationalism

Following the dissatisfaction with the abrupt calling off of the NCM, a section of youth took to militant nationalism.
1924-1925, HRA (Hindustan Republican Association) was established with the aim of establishing a republic in India by bringing about an armed overthrow of the British from the region.
They aimed to assassinate unpopular British officials and strike terror in minds of British rulers.
HRA Founders – Sachindra Nath Sanyal (BANDI JEEVAN), Narendra Mohan Sen & Praful Ganguly. In East Bengal.
To fund HRA activities, funds were required -> Kakori Train Robbery.
1925 Kakori train robbery, a political dacoity to fund their militant activities. However British soon found out their hideouts following which, Ramprasad Bismil, Ashafaqullah Khan, Roshan Singh and Rajendra Lahiri were captured and hanged. Several others were sentenced imprisonment while Chandrashekhar Azad evaded capture.
In 1927, HRA becomes HSRA (Hindustan Socialist Republic Association). It signified an ideological rethinking within the militant nationalists. HSRA adopted socialism as its official goal and argued that objective of the freedom struggle must not be merely the overthrow of British but also the indigenous Zamindars to end exploitation of man by man in all forms.
For a brief period of time HSRA also adopted non-violent means and using open political means against British.
Deeply inspired by the success of Russian revolution and Marxist ideas, Bhagat Singh argued that religion is an opium for masses and wrote the book WHY I AM AN ATHEIST. He also formed the Punjab Naujawan Bharat Sabha’ during this period as he argued for the direct involvement of youth in open political struggle to end exploitation.
1927 – Simon Commission was appointed to review and assess present laws and suggest further political reforms. However, the commission didn’t had any Indian members and therefore Congress was against it.
In a protest against Simon Commission, on 30 Oct 1928, Lala Lajapatarai was injured in lathi charge and eventually died on 17 Nov. Lathi charge was done on orders of Peter Saunders.
17 Dec 1928 Bhagat Singh, Azad and Rajaguru assassinated Peter Saunders (SP) to avenge Lala Lajpatrai’s death.
Bhagat Singh and others decided to surrender and bombed the Central Legislative Assembly on 8 April 1929 to register their opposition to the bills being discussed i.e.
A) The Trade Disputes bill which proposed prohibition of organization of strikes by workers union and empowered police to break such strikes. 
B) Public Safety Bill, which aimed to curtain civil liberties by making it mandatory to take police permission to assemble.
Bhagat Singh and others aimed to use Public trial to spread nationalist consciousness amongst youth during this period. He and Batukeshwar Datt, bombed parliament.
Were jailed…. Did hunger strike against unfair treatment to Indian prisoners… Jatindra Das died of hunger. Were give life sentence for bombing and then capital punishment for Saunders murder and Crime against crown. Bhagat Singh, Rajguru, Sukhdev executed on 24th March 1931.1
In 1927 JLN on behalf of Congress attended the Congress Oppressed Nationalities at Brussels organized by political exicles and revolutionaries from countries of Asia, LA (Latin America) and Africa.
Nehru was elected to the Executive Council of the League Against Imperialism that was born at this Congress.

5. All India States People’s Conference estb in 1927

It was established to coordinate the political activities of different states.
In 1938, Congress included independence of princely states in its goal of independence.
JLN became president of All India States People’s conference in 1939.

5.1 Bardoli Satyagraha (1928)

It was organised by Sardar Patel against the enhancement of demand for land revenue by the Government by 30%.

5.2 Simon Commission

1928, Congress was against it as they felt that without any Indian representation, Commission was unfit to decide upon the constitutional fate of Indians.
Simon Commission did not even recommend a dominion status, it recommended the replacement of diarchy with responsible govt. in the provinces.

5.3 Butler Commission

It was appointed primarily to talk to princely states and take their views. They were concerned about their fate, if British would leave.
Princely states were in favour of British rule since it favoured continuation of their lavish lifestyle.

6. Nehru Report of 1928

Aug 1928 – Congress rejected Simon Commission and appointed Motilal Nehru Committee, went into consultations with Muslim League, Hindu Mahasabha and also Princely states and prepared the Nehru Report of 1928.
/ Congress had asked that if Congress can build consensus on demands by Indians, British would consider them.

Delhi Proposals by Muslim League (Jinnah)Nehru Report (Motilal Nehru)Hindu Mahasabha
Jinnah presented series of 4 demands in Delhi proposals, which if met, the Muslim League was willing to support the Nehru Report and give up demand for separate electorate.Proposed federalism. This will alllow princely states also to retain autonomy. 
To separate Sindh from Bombay Province region and NorthWest Frontier Province must be separated from Punjab province.Rejected the demand to separate Sindh and NWFP.They were against the separation of Sindh and NWFP.  
No bill can be passed on communal matters if 3/4 of community members are against it.Demanded dominion status on lines of white British colonies and not complete independence.
Younger congress members like JLN and SCBose were not happy and argued for complete indpendence. They formed Independece for India League in 1928.
Because of this, a clause was added that ‘If this demand is not granted within 1 year,they will change their demand to complete independence.’
Muslims must have reservations in Muslim majority areas as well as Muslim minority areas.
1/3 in minority areas and in proportion to population in majority areas. Demand for separate electorate was converted into reservation policy.
Agreed for 1/3 reservation in minority areas but rejected ML’s demand for reservation of seats in Muslim Majority areas.
But demand for Hindu reservation in Hindu minority areas was not accepted.
They were also against reservations for Muslims where they were in majority.
Hindus also must get reservation in minority areas e.g. Nagaland.
Federal structure is ok, but federations must be given residuary powers. i.e. more autonomy to provinces.Residuary powers must be granted to center.
It also talked about Secularism and 19 Fundamental Rights, including RTE.
Residuary powers must be with center.

Other demands of Nehru Report include
Fundamental rights
Dissociation of state from religion in any form i.e. Secularism.
Universal Adult Suffrage.
Responsible govt. at provinces and also at centre.
Nobody supported Nehru Report i.e. Neither ML nor HM.
Muslim League went back to the demand of separate electorate.
British ignored the report since it was not even supported by Indians.
1929 – JL Nehru becomes youngest ever president of Congress in Lahore Session.
Jinnah proposed certain amendments to Nehru report at All Parties Conference at Calcutta in 1928 but this demands were not accepted. He in 1929 gave ‘fourteen points’ in reaction to Nehru Report which became basis for all future propaganda of Muslim League.

7. Lahore Session 1929

It saw the demand for Purna Swaraj being ushered in.
Also following Gandhi’s support, Jawaharlal Nehru was oppointed as the President for 1929 session.
The demand for Purna Swaraj represented an evolution of objectives of the Congress, which now moved from Swaraj or self-government to ‘Purna Swaraj’ or complete independence.
Jan 26 1930 was decided to be celebrated as independence day.
The RTC were to be boycotted.
Congress Working Committee was authorized to lauch Civil Disobedience including non payment of taxes and all members of legislatures were asked to resign from their seats.

8. Civil Disobedience Movement

Gandhi presented a series of 11 demands on behalf of Congress which, if met, Congress would be willing to engage in further talks.
There were 11 demands. Gandhi’s focus was on peasants, workers and certain general demands.
Abolition of salt tax.
Total prohibition on sale of liquor.
Reduction of land revenue by half.
Reduction of military expenditure by half.
Reduction in the salary of the higher officials.
Hike in the tariff of imported goods.
Release political prisoners.
Abolition of CID.
License to use arms in self defense.
Rationalization of rupee pound-sterling ratio.
Coastal tariff regulation bill. (Increase import duties from textile).
1930 – As the British ignored Gandhi’s 11 demands, he launched the Civil Disobedience movement around the issue of abolition of salt tax.
12 March 1930 Dandi march started from Sabarmati Ashram to the coastal region of Dandi. Gandhi chose salt tax abolition demand given that it had no socially divisive consequences.
Gandhi’s salt satyagraha was soon followed by the launch of a series of salt satyagrahas. e.g. Sarojini Naidu under Dharsana salt works. Khan Abdul Gafar Khan, in NWFP and C Rajagopalachari in the Madras region, Sardar Vallabhai Patel in other parts of Gujarat region.

/ Khan Abdul Gafar Khan
Khudai Khidmatgar society (servants of God) and its members were called red shirts
Pashtun leader. Received Bharat Ratna. Opposed to partition of India. He also received Pakistan’s highest award. (Nishan e Pakistan). Kept coming to India even after partition.
His members were known as red shirts.
Aka ‘Frontier Gandhi’ or ‘Badshah Khan’.
In Manipur, Rani Gaidilieu also joined the movement at young age of 13, she was arrested and given life imprisonment in 1932, to be released in 1947 in free India. JLN gave her title of ‘Rani’ (Queen).
No tax camapaign was launched, and boycott of British goods and adoption of Swadeshi.
Promotion of Swadeshi schools etc. was initiated.

9. RTCs (Round Table Conferences)

RTCs were organized in Britain to discuss the report of Simon Commission in 1930.
Congress boycotted 1st RTC. Which was attented by ML, Hindu Mahasabha and also Dr. B R Ambedkar.
1931 – Almost a year into CDM, the Congress was seeking concrete gains while Lord Irwin sought Congress Participation in 2nd RTC. Congress suspended CDM for time being.
This led to Gandhi Irwin talks leading to Gandhi-Irwin Pact.
Under the pact, salt tax was abolished, all lands confiscated for non-payment of land revenue during CDM were returned.
All political prisoners must be released from jail, also those imprisoned during CDM, except those under serious crimes.
However Irwin did not accept two other demands – for enquiry into police excesses during CDM.
Demand for commutation of Death Sentence of Bhagat Singh and associates to Life Imprisonment.
1931 Karachi Session of Congress in which Gandhi-Irwin pact was endorsed by Congress and Gandhi was decided to be representing Congress in 2nd RTC.
Also a resolution for National Economic Programme was adopted for first time.
1932, Congress participated in 2nd RTC after temporarily suspending CDM. The British gave the Communal Award in 1932 where in accordance with Ambedkar’s demands, they agreed to extend separate electorates to backward castes.
Gandhi was opposed to this move & decided to withdraw Congress from 2nd RTC midway.
Gandhi returned to India and there was Gandhi Ambedkar debate. Madan Mohana Malaviya acted as a mediator in this debate to come to agreement.
Also due to global depression, price of agricultural products were falling and farmers were finding it difficult to pay rents.
This led to numerous protests and Congress in Dec 1931 started no-rent, no-tax campaign.
JLN, Khan Abdul Gafar Khan were arrested.Lord Willingdon the erstwhile Viceroy was bent upon crushing Congress and CDM.
Gandhi, after returning from Britain resumed CDM. Several Congress leaders including Gandhiji were arrested and Congress was declared Illegal by Lord Willingdon. CDM eventually died in 1934.
Leaders like Subhas Chandra Bose and Vithalbhai Patel declared that ‘Mahatma as a political leader has failed’.
However the movement did succeeded in further political unification of country.m

10. Gandhi Ambedkar Debate

Gandhi argued for abolition of untouchability while Ambedkar argued for abolition of caste system in totality.
Gandhi gave primacy to political issue i.e. to gain indpendence from British and then propel its use for pursuing social equality and freedom.
While Ambedkar wanted to revolve caste issue first and rather said that abolition of caste system will help in strengthening national consciousness.
There was also difference in how they sought to solve the problem of untouchability. Gandhi saw it as a problem in consciousness of upper castes and needs to be solved by method of persuasion e.g. in 1934 Gandhi formed Harijan Sevak Sangh. Under which he gave public speeches and urged people to abolish the practice.
Ambedkar felt that discrimination exists because politico-economical deprivation of lower castes and thus politico-economic empowerment of dalits will earn respect for them and will end the problem of untouchability.
Ambedkar also argued for supporting intercaste marriage and intercaste dining. Gandhi didn’t support it.
However both of them perceive untouchability as a social evil.
Poona Pact – Sep 1932.
Congress did not participated in 3rd RTC.

11. Karachi Session of 1931

Led by Sardar Vallabhai Patel
A resolution on fundamental rights and economic policy were passed. (drafted by JL Nehru) Universal Adult Franchise, Free and Compulsory edu, Right to speech, expression, religion etc.
It also contained the mention of fundamental duties.
Reduction in rent and revenue…
/Abolition of landlordism was adopted by Congress working committee in 1945.

11.1 1932

Following Gandhi’s withdrawal from the 2nd RTC in 1932, he sat on a hunger strike, demanding abolition of separate electorate for backward castes.
This resulted in Poona Pact when Ambedkar was forced to accommodate Gandhi’s demands for joint electorate and reservations for backward castes.
3rd RTC saw no participation of Congress, following which the British introduced GOI Act 1935.

11.2 1934

Congress Socialist Party (CSP) was founded at Bombay in October 1934 under the leadership of Jayaprakash Narayan, Acharya Narendra Dev and Minoo Masani.
Socialism through democratic means was goal of CSP.

12. Chittagong Armoury Raid 18 April 1930

Attmpt to raid armoury of Police and auxillory forces from Chittagong, Bengal. (Bangladesh).
Led by Surya Sena along with Pritilata Wadeddar and Kalpana Datta (Joshi).
Surya Sen was also active member of Congress and participated in NCM.

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