The Civil Disobedience Movement

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  • Q1

    Explain the salient features of Gandhi-Irwin Pact.


    Gandhi-Irwin Pact was signed on the 5 March 1931 between Mahatma Gandhi and British India Viceroy Lord Irwin to cooperate in the drafting of the constitution.
    The salient features of the accord were –
    a) Congress agreed to participate in the Second Round Table Conference.
    b) Congress agreed to withdraw the Civil Disobedience Movement immediately and effectively in all respects.
    c) Boycott of British goods would also be withdrawn.
    d) British government agreed to withdraw ordinance promulgated in relation to the Civil Disobedience Movement.
    e) The political prisoners against whom there were no allegations were to be released. Indemnities would be paid to those who suffered in the movement.
    f) The government also conceded the right to make salt for consumption only.

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  • Q2

    Described the programme of the Salt Satyagraha movement.


    Gandhi ji started the Salt Satyagraha on 12 March 1930. He chose seventy eight followers from the Hindus, Muslims, Christians, untouchables, scholars, newspaper editors and weavers.
    The main programme of the Salt Satyagraha included:
    a) Salt law should be violated everywhere in defiance of law.
    b) Students should leave government schools and colleges.
    c) Government servants should resign from their service.
    d) Foreign goods should be burnt.
    e) No taxes to be paid to the government.
    f) Women should start dharna before liquor shops.

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  • Q3

    Describe the various recommendations made by Ramsay MacDonald for ‘Communal Award’ of 1932 CE?


    On 16 August 1932 CE, Ramsey MacDonald announced Communal Award to accommodate separate electorate for Muslims, Sikhs and the European voters. His recommendations were –
    a) He doubled the existing seats of provincial legislatures.
    b) He retained the system of separate electorate of the minorities.
    c) He granted weightage to Muslims in provinces where they were in minority.
    d) He reserved three percent (3%) seats for women in all provincial legislatures, except in the north-western frontier province.
    e) He recognised depressed classes as minority community and made them entitled to the right to separate electorate.
    f) He allotted seats to labour, landlords, traders and industrialists.

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  • Q4

    What was the significance of the Civil Disobedience Movement?


    Civil Disobedience Movement was started for achieving the goal of Swaraj. Though the movement was withdrawn without achieving the goal of Swaraj, still the movement was very significant.
    a) The Civil Disobedience Movement clearly demonstrated that Indians were ready to fight the powerful British government under the leadership of Gandhi ji. The miraculous mass awakening in the heroic period demonstrated great power of the non-violence. The experience of the Civil Disobedience Movement paved way for the struggle of Quit India Movement in 1942 CE.
    b) A large number of American newsmen covered the Salt Satyagraha movement. The British were extremely sensitive about American opinion on India, as a good number of Americans met Gandhi ji and found him a real force in India. The movement drew the attention of the world. It also exposed the real character of British rule in India to the outer world.
    c) The movement contributed towards moral regeneration of the Indian freedom fighters. It also marked the peak of Gandhi ji’s political influence over the country and the British rule.
    d) The movement received massive response from business group. Businessmen cooperated with political leaders. Merchants of various cities played a major role in opposing the import of foreign goods. Leaders of mercantile community like Birla, Walchand Harichand, Lalji Naranji and Thakurdas supported the Civil Disobedience Movement.
    e) The movement mobilised great political support for the Indian National Movement.

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  • Q5

    What was the impact of Gandhi-Irwin Pact on Congress?


    There were far reaching impacts of the Gandhi-Irwin Pact –
    a) The viceroy was forced to treat the Indian national leaders on an equal footing.
    b) The pact increased the prestige of Congress and its stature after Gandhi ji.
    c) The British authority accepted Congress as an authority to speak for political India. British authority admitted the right of Congress to be heard and consulted for all future negotiations. Gandhi ji went to London to take part in the Second Round Table conference as the sole representative of the Congress.
    d) Rural Congress workers were given warm reception by the villagers after releasing from the jail. This demonstration awakened the political consciousness among the masses to such a degree that was undreamt before. The inspiration and awakening caused the masses to take part in the future movements like Quit India Movement.
    e) After the Bardoli decision, the Congress organisation virtually collapsed. However, in 1931 CE, party activities considerably increased. The Congress party’s machinery was extended.
    f) Combination of economic pressure, heightened morale of the average Congress activist, Congress official’s reluctance to undertake the radical programme, all produced a variety of pressure from below on the central leadership.

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