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Essay on the spread of civil disobedience

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1. The movement was of revolt and defiance of the British authority on the one hand and constructive work for the masses on the other. Boycott of cloth was coupled with khadi.

2. Prohibition took the shape of cutting down all Toddi trees and picketing all wine shops.

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3. Suppression of the newspapers was met with by innumerable cyclostyled newssheets.

4. There were processions and meetings in defiance of the Police.

5. The volunteer organizations and women came to be front. They made picketing very effective at the liquor shops and cloth shops.

The participation of women was electrifying in its effect, and incidentally brought them a new social emancipation in the process.

Incidents of heroism and names of places and persons that specially distinguished themselves in those glorious days are too numerous to be commemorated. We can but make mention of a few.

1. At Peshawar the Pathans under the leadership of Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan affectionately called the Frontier Gandhi vigorously participated in movement.

At one time as the leader of the procession was shot down by the military police, another came to take his place and was shot down to be replaced by a third till there were several casualties in cold blood.

Another incident associated with Peshawar fills one with pride. There was a wholesale firing on the unarmed crowds.

Two Platoons of the second battalion of the 18th Garhwal Rifles, Hindu troops, in the midst of a Muslim crowd, refused the order to fire and fraternized with the people.

Court- martial imposed savage sentences on 17 men of Garhwal rifles. From April 25th to May 4th Peshawar was in the hands of the people and had to be recaptured by powerful British forces with Air Squadrons.

2. In Bengal for some months, the district of Midnapore appeared to be beyond the reach of the Bengal Government.

The revolutionary party, disagreeing with Gandhiji’s non-violence was also active. The armoury raid in Chittagong, which even Gandhiji had to admit was a ‘daring deed’, electrified the country.

3. At Bombay a boy named Babu Ganno stood across a Police lorry at the Kalbadevi Road to prevent its progress and was crushed under it.

4. In Gujarat, the great event was no-tax campaign successfully carried out in Bardoli and Borsad Talukas under the leadership of Sardar Vallabbhai Patel.

5. In United Province a general no-tax campaign was inaugurated. Both the Zamindars and Tenants being called upon to withhold payment of rent and revenue.

6. In Bihar, the Chowkidar Tax was withheld in large areas, The Province suffered to the full from the imposition of punitive police and confiscation of large properties in lieu of petty sums.

7. In the Central Provinces various satyagrahis were successfully launched and continued in spite of the heavy fines and police excesses.

8. In Karnataka also no-tax campaign was organised in which more than 800 families participated.

9. Punjab gave a good account of itself, specially in the boycott of foreign cloth. Women picketers including Muslim ladies took part.

Gandhi did two things in 1930. He made the British aware that they were cruelly subjugating India and he gave Indians the conviction that they would, by lifting their heads and straightening their spines, lift the yoke from their shoulders.

The British beat the Indians with batons and rifle buts. The Indians neither avenged nor complained nor retreated. That made England powerless and India invincible.

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