please explain me the topic : towards civil disobedience of history and also give some important terms to remember.

Asked by kirti98sharma | 2nd Nov, 2014, 09:14: PM

Expert Answer:

Civil Disobedience Movement:

In February 1922, Mahatma Gandhi decided to withdraw the Non-Cooperation Movement because it was turning violent at many places leading to internal debate and dissension affecting the country. So Mahatma Gandhi had to find a way to relate this abstract idea of freedom to more concrete issues of everyday life.

Mahatma Gandhi found that salt was a powerful symbol that could unite the nation. He therefore, sent a letter to Viceroy Irwin stating wide-ranging demands so that all classes within Indian society could identify with them and everyone could be brought together in a united campaign. After Irwin showed his unwillingness to negotiate, Mahatma Gandhi started his famous salt march accompanied by 78 of his trusted volunteers. This marked the beginning of the Civil Disobedience Movement.

This movement asked people to not only to refuse cooperation with the British but also break colonial laws. These were done by breaking the salt law, boycotting the foreign cloth and picketing the liquor, refusing to pay revenues and taxes, resignation of village officials and violation of forest laws. This worried the government, which then began to arrest the leaders. They attacked peaceful satyagrahis, beat women and children and arrested about 100,000 people.

This made Mahatma Gandhi to call off the movement and entered into a pact with Irwin on 5 March 1931 and consented to participate in a Round Table Conference. The conference yielded no results and he discovered that government had begun a new cycle of repression. With great apprehension, Mahatma Gandhi relaunched the Civil Disobedience Movement. For over a year, the movement continued, but by 1934 it lost its momentum.

Participants of Civil Disobedience Movements:

All kind of social groups participated in the Civil Disobedience movement like the Rich peasants, Poor Peasants, Industrialists, Business class. This movement also showed large-scale participation of women. Some of these groups were active when the movement was first started but they lost were deeply disappointed when the movement was called off in 1931. Therefore did not participate in the movement when it was restarted. Also, inclusion of some of the groups was not clear because of the uncertainty of the relationship between them and the leaders.

Limits of Civil Disobedience Movements:

When the Civil Disobedience Movement started there was thus an atmosphere of suspicion and distrust between communities. This is because the abstract concept of Swaraj did not move two groups – untouchables and the Muslim political organisations.

The former (untouchables) were constantly ignored by the Congress for fear of offending the sanatanis, the conservative high-caste Hindus.  While for Muslim community, after the decline of the Non-Cooperation-Khilafat movement, they felt alienated from the Congress. Many Muslim leaders and intellectuals expressed their concern about the status of Muslims as a minority within India. They feared that the culture and identity of minorities would be submerged under the domination of a Hindu majority.

Answered by Akanksha Kaul | 3rd Nov, 2014, 12:50: PM

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