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Campaign against Curzon's partition of Benegal 1905
- Bengal was large, densely populated and always been difficult to control
- Hindu west and mainly Muslim east - wanted to split the two for efficiency and interests of admin.
- Nationwide protests - number of murders and a boycott of British goods
Morley-Minto reforms 1909
- 60 Indian representatives elected to serve the Viceroy's Executive Council - 27 from territorial constituencies & special interest groups - other 33 officials working for Britain
- The provincial councils were enlarged to create non-official majorities
- Separate Muslim electorates created to make sure the Muslim voice was heard
- Reaction: Indians has more opportunities to be consulted about policy making in India and Britain
- HOWEVER NO ACCEPTANCE TO INDIAN SELF-GOV.
First world war 1914
- Was supported by the Princes, the league and even congress
- over 800,000 Indians joined the British armed forces - exceeded expectation; highly motivated
- Impact: strengthened case for Indian self-gov. - contributed men and £146mil of Indian revenue
- Home rule league are set up by Anne Besant - Fighting for dominion status after Indian effort in war
- Mass following through rallies
- British worried - Besant imprisoned without trail in 1917
1916 - Lucknow Pact
- Nationalists movement - strengthened when league and congress join - uniting India
- Agreed to get fixed no. of sears in parliament
Lord Chelmsford Viceroy 1916-21
- Indian stripped of British troops
- economic hardship
- unrest for home rule
- - Viceroy believes that the situation could become incontrollable and concessions were needed to stop violence and encourage continuous support of war.
- By the end of the war nationalists more united and bigger.
1917 Montagu Declaration
First time self-gov had ever been accepted by the British as an eventual goal - only a statement and no time frame
Campaign against Rowlatt Acts; Amritsar Massacre 1919
- Following oppressive Rowlatt Acts, Congress launches a campaign of non-violence. Campaign meant to be peaceful but led to violent incidents as protestors confront British.
- Following rioting, a peaceful demonstration takes place in Amritsar in a defiance of a ban on public meetings- In a confined space General Dyer orders troops to open fire leading to 379 deaths. Alienated many Indians from British Raj.
Montagu-Chelmsford reforms (1919 Gov. of India Act). Rowlatt Acts
- Provincial councils: further enlarged, majority of elected members control local education, health etc. However, final say still with British.
- Reaction: Some welcomed it, however, nationalists not satisfied and react by boycotting elections and not voting in elections.
- Eco problems and pass oppressive Rowlett acts despite opposition from every Indian member of ILC which allowed them to imprison without trial and censorship.
- Alienated Indians.
Gandhi imprisoned. (Civil Disobedience campaign)
- In 1920 Gandhi’s influence so great he persuades Congress to adopt non-cooperation tactic and get Swaraj in one year by making India ungovernable.
- Done this by not paying taxes, boycotting exams, lawyers not working.
- However, some Indians didn’t understand morality of Satyagraha and followed own agenda leading to violence including station being burnt down killing 22 police men
- Division between League and Congress reopens at the end of 1922 and in 1924 League breaks away from Congress and holds separate meetings etc.
- Worked in South Africa before coming back to India
- By avoiding violence, he made it hard for the British to deal with him as they prided themselves on ruling according to law
- Dressed as Hindu holy man so had huge appeal to Indian masses. Also backed Khilafat movement to get support of Muslims.
- However, as he was so Hindu, Muslims began to feel that Gandhi was fighting for a Hindu India leading them to start supporting the League.
- A Parliamentary delegation sent to review the working of the 1919 Gov. of India Act.
- Reaction: Met by booing, mass demonstrations etc.
- Angered Indians as showed them British politicians will decide there fate, not Indians, leading to Congress and the League (Jinnah) not giving any info.
Breakdown between Congress and Jinnah and 14-points 1929
- Opponents of commission set up conference to consider future constitution (Nehru report)
- Alarms: Jinnah as no guaranteed voice for Indians as promised in Lucknow pact.
- Jinnah proposes 14-points which guaranteed a 3rd of seats being reserved for Congress, however, this was rejected as Congress felt they could ignore him
The Irwin Declaration:
- Conservative gov., which even opposed dominion status, taken over by MacDonald’s labour gov.
- The Irwin declaration was: Asserted it’s ‘natural issue’ was to be the ‘attainment of dominion status’
- Indians also invited to London for Round Table Conference.
Salt March 1930
- Campaign thought up by Gandhi, brilliantly simple and effective. Were deliberately breaking up gov. monopoly on the manufacture of salt.
- Non-violent and attracted mass people. Also got a lot of media attention. Done this because gov. introduced tax on salt (important commodity)
- Gandhi walks to Gujarat coast and picks up sea salt (illegal) and encourages everyone else to, leading to mass arrests including Gandhi and Nehru
1st Round Table Conference 1930
- Decided in favour of dominion status, but, settled nothing as it wasn’t representative Congress didn’t attend as they thought British would play of Congress against people like the Prince’s (who attended)
- Division in Congress between moderates (Would settle for Dominion status) and radicals (wanted purna swaraj) were growing, Gandhi supports radicals and Nehru, rejecting the dominion status.
- With Gandhi in jail a civil-disobedience campaign also took place form 1930-31, the British struggled to control them and Congress was also exhausted leading to stalemate.
Gandhi-Irwin pact 1931
- Viceroy Irwin fearing Congress may turn to violence so holds face to face talks with Gandhi leading to Gandhi-Irwin pact-Agreed that civil disobedience campaign to be suspended,
- Gandhi has to attend next Round Table conference and 19,000 Congress supporters released.
- Both could have said to have gained but radicals in Congress believed Gandhi had sold out and right wingers in England like Churchill was furious a viceroy was negotiating was Gandhi as an equal
- After conference, a communal award was given which would become a part of any future constitution. It was separate electorates for Muslims, Sikhs, untouchables etc.
- Gandhi responded with fast unto death.
Second Round Table conference
- Gandhi attends as sole representative of Congress and claimed to speak for whole of India, leading to the conference failing.
- His claim to speak for everyone dismissed by Muslim and untouchable representatives who wanted separate electorates (Gandhi rejected)
- Gandhi returns to India with diminished reputation and British respond to unrest by more oppressive policies.
- Gandhi Imprisoned, Congress outlawed etc.
- Indians react by boycotting British goods etc.
Government of India Act
- British answer to issue of Indian Self-gov. Put though Commons by Stanley Baldwin, who believed Indian demands couldn’t be ignored.
- Opposed by Churchill as he believed Indians unfit to govern themselves etc.
- Terms were no.of provinces increased from 8 to 11 giving provincial gov. power over everything apart from foreign policy and defence.
- Federation planned with elected federal parliament (Princes refuse to join and idea abandoned in1939)
- 1 in 6 adults could vote, separate electorates for minority groups.
Government of India Act Limitations
- However, Viceroy still in place and retained the key powers in control of defence and foreign policy but had an Executive committee of mainly Indians
- Reactions: Failed to satisfy many nationalists. Congress wanted ‘purna swaraj’, wanted strong central gov. not provincial gov. and rejected reserved seats forminorities.
- League rejected as didn’t give Muslims enough power
- Despite opposition, this was an opportunity for Congress who won the vote in 9 of the 11 provincial elections making them effectively a partner in gov. with British.
- Congress-led provincial governments resign in protest at India being taken into WW2 without consulting any Indians (showed they were still the master and called into question any of its previous concessions)
- Gandhi said they should negotiate peacefully with Germans, even though everyone including Nehru knew this was unrealistic. They said they would willingly fight if they were granted independence. The Congress Working Committee’s resolution - democratic India and against aggression.
- Indian independence was last thing on British mind so was rejected
Lahore Declaration 1940
- Muslim League calls for an independent Muslim state. Some aspects were not clear, were the Bengal and Punjab going to be independent or self-governing parts of India (as they were in opposite ends of India).
- Always going to be difficult as Muslims lived in Hindu areas and some Hindu’s lived in Muslim areas. (Jinnah used the hostage theory)
Gandhi’s ‘Quit India’ campaign 1942
- Gandhi believed the time had come for Independence, differences to big.
- Congress faced a dilemma, support the campaign during the war were the enemies could possible win, or give Jinnah the upper hand; they decided to back Gandhi and Swaraj.
- It was a delayed decision and due to this the British were given time to prepare. Congress leaders arrested.
- Gandhi tells his supporters to ‘go out to die, not to live’. Led to a lot of violence, 3000 serious injuries result.
- As this was threatening supplies during the war, the British used the RAF who dropped flares, maybe the machine gun and 35000 troops made available.
- Overall, the campaign didn’t paralyse gov and just bought despair and death.
Cripps Mission 1942
- Under-pressure from the US to grant independence to India so Churchill sends send Cripps (Labour, friend of Nehru and Gandhi, sympathetic to India) to lead a delegation to India.
- He offered full dominion status after the war, India can elect an assembly to frame new constitution etc.
- Gandhi, Congress rejected this as they were not willing for states to be able to opt out of India.
- However, didn’t work as Indians wanted Independence
Failure of Simla conference 1945
- Churchill’s gov ready to make another attempt to settle India due to debt to India etc.
- Similar to the Cripps mission however Executive council will be chosen to give balanced representation of main communities (equal number of Indians and Muslims).
- Was rejected due to Jinnah’s insistence that all Muslims of the Executive council should be voted by the League and Congress stating they were the exclusive party
- Was sent by Labour to try and secure a deal everyone accepting but a speech by Nehru derailed any hope - They suggested a United India would be better.
- A 2nd Simla Conference held so they could run through Cabinet Missions proposal.
- There would be an all Indian Union responsible for Defence, foreign policy etc. 3 clusters of Provincial gov who would all have their own gov responsible for day-to-day things and a all Indian union.
- Congress and League accepted but Nehru’s speech (were he said once congress control all Indian union they could do whatever they like and that the Muslim groups will fall apart) led to Jinnah withdrawing a calling for a day of Direct Action (1946).
- Britain in economic problems, owe India army money, India had no economic benefit
- anymore as British textiles lost their market their.
- Nehru sworn in as Prime Minister of interim gov and Jinnah persuaded to join the gov to try and secure a separate Pakistan.
- Deadlock between Congress & Muslim League over partition. Muslim League’s ‘Day of Action’ leads to rioting in Calcutta & across India.
- Viceroy Wavell worried due to Congress effectively control 3quarters of provincial gov due to gov on India Act 1935 and police seemed likely to be loyal to those who were more likely to be in power.
Atlee declares Britain will leave India by 1948
Partition & independence for India & Pakistan.
- Viscount Mountbatten Viceroy 1947(Had to try and avoid partition. Had sympathy for Nationalist movement, a man of action, could make tough decisions, didn’t have much time and if terms couldn’t be agreed they would leave power to the existing central and provincial governments. They wanted India to be there ally and also united due to the USSR threat of expanding in the South East. (also needed to keep contact with commonwealth and oilfields in middle east).
- Muslim threatened Civil War if they didn’t get Pakistan. Violence in Punjab breaks down between Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs.
- Gandhi was irrelevant by now.
Congress accepts Partition
- A final plan was now produced as they were desperate to get out of India and to do this had to please Jinnah (partition) and Nehru.
- Riots everywhere
- 5 weeks to draw up a boundary. Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs terrified in case they were on the wrong side of the boundary
- the Muslims heading left were killed by Hindus and Sikhs and the Hindu’s and Sikhs moving West were killed by Muslims (around 1 mil massacred)
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