Welcome, UPSC aspirants, to this comprehensive study material on the Indian National Movement (1905-1918). In this module, we will delve into the key events and developments during this period that shaped India's struggle for independence. We will explore topics such as the Partition of Bengal, the Swadeshi Movement, the Muslim League, the Surat Session of INC, the Indian Council Act (Morley-Minto Act), the Ghadar Party, the Komagata Maru Incident, the Lucknow Pact, the Home Rule Movement, and the August Declaration. So, let's embark on this enlightening journey through India's freedom struggle!
I. Partition of Bengal (1905):
The Partition of Bengal in 1905 was a significant event that sparked widespread discontent and mobilization against British colonial rule. Here are the key points to remember:
1. The British administration divided Bengal along religious lines, separating the predominantly Hindu western region from the predominantly Muslim eastern region.
Trick to Remember: Visualize the Partition as the slicing of Bengal along religious lines.
2. The move was met with strong opposition from the Indian nationalist leaders, who saw it as a deliberate attempt to weaken the unity and strength of the Indian populace.
Trick to Remember: Think of the nationalist leaders as protectors of India's unity, rallying against the Partition.
3. The Partition of Bengal led to a surge in nationalist sentiment and the emergence of the Swadeshi Movement, which we will explore next.
Trick to Remember: Remember that the Partition was a catalyst for the Swadeshi Movement.
II. Swadeshi Movement:
The Swadeshi Movement was a key phase of the Indian National Movement, characterized by a spirit of indigenous self-reliance and boycott of British goods. Let's understand the important aspects:
1. The movement called upon Indians to boycott British goods and promote the use of Indian-made products, thus aiming to revive indigenous industries and promote economic self-sufficiency.
Trick to Remember: Imagine the Swadeshi Movement as a call to support Indian-made goods, promoting self-reliance.
2. Swadeshi activists, including prominent leaders like Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Lala Lajpat Rai, organized public meetings, processions, and demonstrations to mobilize the masses.
Trick to Remember: Picture Tilak and Lajpat Rai as torchbearers of the Swadeshi Movement, inspiring the masses.
3. The movement was not limited to economic aspects; it also encompassed cultural revival, promotion of national education, and fostering a sense of Indian identity and pride.
Trick to Remember: Envision the Swadeshi Movement as a multi-faceted drive for economic and cultural resurgence.
III. Muslim League, 1906:
The establishment of the All India Muslim League in 1906 marked a significant development in India's political landscape. Let's explore the key details:
1. The Muslim League was formed in Dhaka with the aim of safeguarding the political rights and interests of the Muslim community in India.
Trick to Remember: Think of the Muslim League as a platform for Muslim representation and empowerment.
2. The league demanded separate electorates for Muslims and voiced concerns about potential Hindu domination in a united India.
Trick to Remember: Visualize the Muslim League advocating for separate electorates to protect Muslim interests.
3. The formation of the Muslim League laid the foundation for future demands for a separate Muslim-majority nation, eventually leading to the creation of Pakistan.
Trick to Remember: Remember that the Muslim League played a pivotal role in the demand for a separate nation.
IV. Surat Session of INC, 1907:
The Surat Session of the Indian National Congress (INC) in 1907 witnessed a significant split within the organization. Let's unravel the key details:
1. The Surat Session was marked by ideological differences and conflicts between the moderates, led by Gopal Krishna Gokhale, and the extremists, led by Bal Gangadhar Tilak.
Trick to Remember: Picture Gokhale and Tilak as the contrasting figures leading to a divide in the Surat Session.
2. The differences centered on issues of leadership, methods of protest, and the goal of the national movement.
Trick to Remember: Think of leadership, methods, and goals as the key points of contention at the Surat Session.
3. The split in the Surat Session highlighted ideological diversity within the Indian National Congress and paved the way for the emergence of more radical approaches to the freedom struggle.
Trick to Remember: Envision the Surat Session as a turning point where differing ideologies led to a divergence in the Congress.
V. Indian Council Act (Morley-Minto Act) 1909:
The Indian Council Act, also known as the Morley-Minto Act, was a significant constitutional reform introduced by the British in response to growing nationalist demands. Here are the key aspects:
1. The Act expanded the legislative councils at the provincial and central levels and increased Indian representation, though it fell short of the nationalist aspirations for full self-governance.
Trick to Remember: Remember the Morley-Minto Act as a step toward limited Indian representation in legislative councils.
2. Separate electorates were introduced for Muslims, further promoting communal divisions in Indian politics.
Trick to Remember: Visualize separate electorates as an outcome of the Morley-Minto Act, promoting communal politics.
3. The Act marked a limited progress in the Indian demand for self-government, but it also highlighted the need for more comprehensive reforms and intensified the nationalist struggle.
Trick to Remember: Envision the Morley-Minto Act as a partial step toward self-government, spurring the nationalist struggle.
VI. Ghadar Party, 1913:
The Ghadar Party was a revolutionary organization founded by Indian immigrants in the United States. Let's understand its significance:
1. The Ghadar Party aimed to overthrow British rule in India through armed rebellion and played a crucial role in organizing revolutionary activities.
Trick to Remember: Think of the Ghadar Party as a group of revolutionaries determined to free India through armed rebellion.
2. The party published the newspaper "Ghadar" to disseminate revolutionary ideas and mobilize support among Indians in India and abroad.
Trick to Remember: Remember the "Ghadar" newspaper as a tool for spreading revolutionary ideas.
3. The Ghadar Party's efforts inspired widespread resistance against British rule, and its members actively participated in revolutionary activities, including the infamous Lahore Conspiracy Case.
Trick to Remember: Envision the Ghadar Party as a catalyst for revolutionary activities and inspiring resistance against British rule.
VII. Komagata Maru Incident, 1914:
The Komagata Maru Incident was a tragic event that highlighted British discriminatory policies towards Indian immigrants. Let's uncover the key details:
1. The Komagata Maru was a ship carrying Indian immigrants that arrived in Vancouver, Canada, in 1914.
Trick to Remember: Picture the Komagata Maru as the ship carrying Indian immigrants.
2. The Canadian government imposed stringent regulations that prevented the passengers from disembarking, leading to a months-long standoff.
Trick to Remember: Remember the Komagata Maru incident as a prolonged standoff between Indian immigrants and the Canadian government.
3. The incident exposed the discriminatory treatment faced by Indian immigrants and sparked outrage and solidarity among Indians in India and abroad.
Trick to Remember: Visualize the Komagata Maru incident as a symbol of discrimination and the resulting Indian solidarity.
VIII. The Lucknow Pact (1916):
The Lucknow Pact of 1916 was a significant milestone in Indian history, promoting Hindu-Muslim unity and demanding political reforms. Let's explore its key aspects:
1. The Lucknow Pact was an agreement between the Indian National Congress and the All India Muslim League, aimed at presenting a united front against British colonial rule.
Trick to Remember: Envision the Lucknow Pact as a bridge between the Congress and the Muslim League for united action.
2. The pact demanded self-government for India, separate electorates for Muslims, and increased representation for Indians in legislative councils.
Trick to Remember: Remember the Lucknow Pact's demands for self-government, separate electorates, and increased representation.
3. The pact fostered Hindu-Muslim unity and set a precedent for future cooperation between the two communities in the Indian freedom struggle.
Trick to Remember: Visualize the Lucknow Pact as a catalyst for Hindu-Muslim unity in the freedom movement.
IX. Home Rule Movement (1915–1916):
The Home Rule Movement was a mass-based campaign aimed at demanding self-governance within the British Empire. Let's delve into its key features:
1. The movement was initiated by Annie Besant and Bal Gangadhar Tilak, who formed the All India Home Rule League and mobilized support across India.
Trick to Remember: Think of Annie Besant and Tilak as the driving forces behind the Home Rule Movement.
2. The movement focused on grassroots organizing, holding public meetings, publishing newspapers, and propagating the idea of self-rule.
Trick to Remember: Remember the Home Rule Movement's emphasis on grassroots organizing and popular outreach.
3. The movement gained significant momentum, with large-scale participation from people across different regions, religions, and social strata.
Trick to Remember: Visualize the Home Rule Movement as a mass movement with diverse participation.
X. August Declaration, 1917:
The August Declaration of 1917, also known as the Montagu Declaration, was a significant announcement by the British government regarding political reforms in India. Let's understand its key aspects:
1. The declaration, made by the Secretary of State for India, Edwin Montagu, promised increased participation of Indians in the governance of their country.
Trick to Remember: Envision the August Declaration as a promise of increased Indian participation in governance.
2. The declaration aimed to introduce responsible government in India, granting Indians more control over their own affairs.
Trick to Remember: Remember the August Declaration's goal of responsible government and increased Indian control.
3. The declaration raised hopes among the Indian population and intensified the demand for complete independence from British rule.
Trick to Remember: Visualize the August Declaration as a spark that ignited the desire for complete independence.
With these concise yet informative points and easy tricks to remember, you can now confidently navigate the Indian National Movement (1905-1918) and its significant events. Best of luck in your preparations for the UPSC Exam, and may your knowledge of India's freedom struggle shine bright!