Chapter Notes - Mahatma Gandhi & The Nationalist Movement, Class 12, History | EduRev Notes

History Class 12

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MAHATMA GANDHI AND THE NATIONALIST MOVEMENT CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE AND BEYOND

  • Mahatma Gandhi is the most influential and revered of all the leaders who participated in the freedom struggle of India.
  • In January 1915, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi returned to India after spending two decades in South Africa.
  • It was in South Africa he first focused the distinctive techniques of non-violent protest known as Satyagraha and Promoted harmony between religions.
  • On Gokhale’s advice he spent one year traveling around British India to know the land and its peoples.
  • His first major public appearance was at the opening of the Banaras Hindu University in February 1916.
  • Here in his speech Gandhiji Charged the Indian elite with a lack of concern for the labouring poor .
  • He successfully organized Satyagraha at Champaran (Bihar in 1917); Ahmedabad and Kheda in 1918.
  • In 1919 Gandhiji called for a century wide campaign against the “Rowlatt Act”. It was the Rowlatt Satyagraha that made Gandhiji a truly national leader.
  • In 1920 After Jalianwala Bagh Massacre he called for a campaign of non cooperation with British Rule and joined hands with the Khilafat movement.
  • The British Raj was shaken to its foundations for the first time since the Revolt of 1857.
  • Non-cooperation movement was suspended in 1922 after Chauri-Chaura incident.
  • Causes of Gandhiji’s popularity among Indians-he dressed like them lived like them and speak their language.
  • Mahatma Gandhi was released from prison in February 1924 devoted himself in constructive work like promotion of home-spun cloth khadi, abolition of untouchability,  Hindu-Muslim unity etc.
  • In 1928 Gandhiji began to think of reentering politics. After the failure of Simon Commission in its annual session at Lahore Congress demanded Purna Swaraj and decided to observe 26th January 1930 as Independence Day.
  • 12th March 1930-Dandi Satyagraha, Salt March.
  • On 6th April 1930 broke the salt law.
  • Across large parks of India peasants breached forest laws, factory workers went on the strike, lawyers boycotted courts and students refused to attend government run  educational institutions.

1930- First Round Table conference- Gandhiji did not attend.
1931- Gandhi-Irwin pact, 2nd Round Table Conference- Gandhi attended but it failed.
1935- Government of India Act
1937- Provincial Election, Congress formed ministries in 8 out of 11 provinces.
1939- World War II broke out, Individual Satyagraha.
1940- Two Nation Theory put forward by Jinnah.
1942- Failure of Cripps Mission.
9th August 1942- Quit India Movements by Gandhiji. Gandhiji along with all prominent leaders sent to jail.
1946- Cabinet Mission- Failed to get the Congress and the League to agree on the federal system.
16th August 1946- Direct Action Day and Communal riots in Bengal, Bihar, U.P and Punjab.
1947- Mountbatten was appointed as viceroy.
15th August 1947- Formal transfer of power, announcement of partition and India got her independence.
 

The last heroic days of Gandhiji:-

  • On 15th August 1947 Gandhiji was not at Delhi to witness the festivities. He was at Calcatta and undertook a 24 hour fast.
  • Due to initiative of Gandhiji and Nehru Congress passed a resolution on the rights of the minorities.

After working to bring peace to Bengal Gandhiji shifted to Delhi from where he hoped tomove on to the riot-torn districts of Punjab. On 30th January 1948 Gandhiji was shot dead by Nathuram Godse.

Sources to know more about Gandhiji:-
1. Public voice and private scripts.
2. Series of Personal letters published by Gandhiji in his journal Harijan.
3. A bunch of old letters edited by Nehru.
4. Fortnightly Reports of the Home Department.

5. From newspapers.

Very short questions(02 marks)

Q.1 Who were Lal-Bal-Pal?
 Ans- 
All three were early extremist leaders, who led the nation-wide Nationalist movement. Lal-Lala lajpat Rai, Bal- Bal Ganga dhar Tilak and Pal- Bipin Chandra Pal.

Q.2 Name one movement launched for farmers and peasants by Mahatma Gandhi in India?
 Ans. 
1. Champaran Satyagraha 1917 for indigo peasants.
2.Ahmedabad mill labour movement 1918.

Q.3 State the significance of Gandhiji`s speech at Banaras Hindu University?
 Ans:- 
1. Gandhiji charged the Indian elite with a lack of concern for the labouring poor.
2. He worried about the contrast between the rich and poor. He felt salvation of India lay in the farmers.

Q.4 What is meant by Rowlatt Act?
 Ans:-
Anybody could be arrested on the basis of suspicion and put in prison without trial.
This Act was made by Rowlatt to suppress the freedom struggle.

Q.5 Why was charkha chosen as a national symbol?
 Ans:-
1- Symbol of self-reliance and self confidence.
2. Source of employment for thousands of poor and unemployed.

Q.6 What was the significance of Lahore Session of Congress?
 Ans:-
1- Declaration of poorna Swaraj as the main objective of Congress.
2- 26 January 1930 to be celebrated as Independence Day.

Q.7 Describe the Gandhi –Irwin Pact of 1931?
 Ans:- 
1- Gandhiji postponed Civil Disobedience movement.
2- Irwin agreed to release all prisoners and allowed to make salt along the coast.
3- Gandhiji agreed to go to second round table conference.

Q.8 What was the attitude of the Indian National Congress towards the second world war?
 Ans:- 
1-Both Mahatma Gandhi and Nehru were against Hitler and Nazis.
2-They promised congress support to the war effort if the British in return promised to grant India Independence after the war.

Short questions (05 marks)

 

Q9. Why did Gandhiji start Non-cooperation Movement? Why was it withdrawn?
 Ans:- 

  • To oppose Rowlatt Act.
  • To undo the injustice done at Jalianwala Bagh.
  • To support the Khilafat Movement.
  • To attend Swaraj.
  • Violence at Chauri-Chaura – He withdrew non co-operation movement because of the incident of Chauri-Chaura
  • Gandhiji believed in non-violence.


Q10. Explain the significance of Dandi March? 1. Violation of Salt law- a monopoly of British and manufacturing of salt.
2. Large scale participation of women.
3. Civil law violated across large part of India.

Ans:-

Q11. What was the problem of separate electorates? What were the disagreement between Congress and Dalits on this issue? Finally what solution to be of this issue?
 Ans:- 
Demand of separate electorates by the Dalits in which they wanted reservation in separate Electorates like muslims.
In 1931 in the second Round Table Conference Dalit leader Dr.B.R.Ambedkar said Congress does not represent the Dalits.

  • He said Dalits are socially and economically backward. By separate electorate they  can put demands of their rights.
  • Gandhiji opposed the separate electorates.
  • Finally Congress gave separate electorates to Dalits within the Congress.

Long questions (10 marks)

Q12. How did Gandhiji transform National Movement into mass movement?
 Ans:- 
1. Simple lifestyle
2. Use of Hindi for communication
3. Role of Gandhiji in three mass movement.
4. Emphasis on Truth and non-violence
5. swadeshi, boycott and Swaraj.
6. Importance on Charkha and Khadi.
7. Upliftment of women, poor down trodden.
8. Hindu-Muslim unity
9. Abolition of untouchability.
10. Balancing each and every section of society.

Q13. Explain the sources from which we can reconstruct the political career of Mahatma
 Gandhi and the history of National Movement of India.
 Ans:-

  • Auto-biographies and biographies.
  • Contemporary newspapers.
  • Official and police records.,
  • Public speeches
  • Private letters.


Q.14 “Where ever Gandhiji went, rumours spread of his miraculous power.” Explain with examples.

Ans:- 

1. The ascetic life style,
2. Use of dhoti and charkha
3. Use of Hindi for communication made Gandhiji very popular.
4. Where ever he went rumours spread of his miraculous powers.

  • Sent by King to redress the grievances of the farmers.
  • Had power to overrule all local officials.
  • Gandhiji was superior to the British.

5- Fight against untouchability.


 

Q.15 Source based questions:-

Read the following passage and answer the questions given below:
 Why the salt satyagraha?
 Why was salt the symbol of protest? This is what Mahatma Gandhi wrote:
 The volume of information being gained daily shows how wickedly the salt tax has being designed. In order to prevent the use of salt that has not paid the tax which is at times even fourteen times its value, the Government destroys the salt it can not sell profitably. Thus it taxes the nation’s vital necessity; it prevents the public from manufacturing it and destroys
 what nature manufactures without effort. No adjective is strong enough for characterising this wicked dog-in-the-manager policy. From various sources I hear tales of such wanton destruction of the nation’s property in all parts of India. Maunds if not tons of salt are said to be destroyed on the Konkan coast. The same tale comes from Dandi. Wherever there is likelihood of natural salt being taken away by the people living in the neighbourhood areas for their personal use, salt officers are posted for the sole purpose of carrying on destruction. Thus valuable national property is destroyed at national expense and salt taken out of the mouths of the people.
 The salt monopoly is thus a fourfold curse. It deprives the people of a valuable easy village industry, involves wanton destruction of property that nation produces in abundance, the destruction itself means more national expenditure, and fourthly, to crown his folly, and unheard-of takes of more than 1,000 per cent is exacted from a starving people. This tax has remained so long because of the apathy of the general public. Now that it is sufficiently roused, the tax has to go. How soon it will be abolished depends upon the strength the people.

 

Q1- Why was salt the symbol of protest?              (2)
 Ans- 
Salt was the symbol of protest because salt was used by everyone even by the poorest Indians. In every Indian household salt was indispensable yet people were forbidden from making salt even for domestic use compelling them to buy it from shops at a high price.

Q2- Why was salt destroyed by the Colonial Government?              (3)
 Ans- 
The salt tax had been wickedly designed. In order to prevent the use of salt that has not paid the tax which was at times even fourteen times its value, the Government
destroyed the salt it could not sell profitably.

Q3- Why did Mahatma Gandhi consider the salt tax more oppressive than other taxes?             (3)
 Ans- 
Gandhiji considered the salt tax more oppressive than other taxes because salt tax was wickedly designed by the Government. The salt tax was at times even fourteen times its values. The Government destroyed the salt it can not sell profitably. Wherever there was likelihood of natural salt being taken away by the people salt officers were posted for destruction. In this way national property was destroyed at national expe

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