Independence Day 2022: India celebrates Independence Day every year on August 15. In 2022, this day will be historically significant as the country completes 75 years of Independence from the imperial rule of the Britishers. In these 75 years, India's journey has been nothing less than adventurous, both politically and socially.
India's Independence from the imperial power was full of sacrifices. The struggle to gain independence has a long list of movements that were required to show a united front to make the voices reach to every corner of the world.
As India celebrates the 75 years of its glorious Independence, we remember here the Indian National Movement and various significant phases attached to it.
Summary of Indian National Movement
It has been observed that the struggles for Freedom in India had been a merger of a series of Political, Socio-Cultural, and Economic factors that led to the rise of Nationalism.
- On 28 December 1885 Indian National Congress (INC) was founded on the premises of Gokuldas Tejpal Sanskrit School at Bombay. It was presided over by W.C Banerjee and attended by 72 delegates. A.O Hume played an instrumental role in the foundation of INC with an aim to provide Safety Valve to the British Government.
- A.O Hume served as the first General Secretary of INC.
- The real Aim of Congress is to train the Indian youth in political agitation and to organise or to create public opinion in the country. For this, they use the method of an annual session where they discuss the problem and passed the resolution.
- The first or early phase of Indian Nationalism is also termed as Moderate Phase (1885-1905). Moderate leaders were W.C Banerjee, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, R.C Dutt, Ferozeshah Mehta, George Yule, etc.
- Moderates have full faith in British Government and adopted the PPP path i.e. Protest, Prayer, and Petition.
- Due to disillusionment from Moderates' methods of work, extremism began to develop within the congress after 1892. The Extremist leaders were Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, and Aurobindo Ghosh. Instead of the PPP path, they emphasise on self-reliance, constructive work, and swadeshi.
- With the announcement of the Partition of Bengal (1905) by Lord Curzon for administrative convenience, Swadeshi and Boycott resolution was passed in 1905.
Congress Sessions during Swadeshi Movement:
1. 1905 – Congress session in Banaras. Presided over by Gopal Krishan Gokhale.
2. 1906 – Congress Session in Calcutta. Presided over by Dadabhai Naroji.
3. 1907 – Congress Session in Surat on the bank of the river Tapti. Presided over by Pherozeshah Mehta where due to the differences between Moderates and Extremists first split in Congress occurred.
- Muslim League was founded in 1906 by Agah Khan III and Moshin Mulk.
- Separate electorate was introduced by the Act of 1909 Morley- Minto Reform Act.
- Gadhar Movement was started by Lala Hardayal in 1913 and founded the Gadhar party on 1st November 1913. Its headquarter was set up in the form of Yugantar Ashram in San Francisco and started the publication of Gadhar Journal.
- Komgata Maru incident took place in September 1914 and for this Indians set up a committee named as Shore Committee to fight the legal battle of the passengers.
- In 1914 First World War broke out.
- Tilak on April 1916 started Home Rule Movement and its headquarter was at Poona and demanded Swaraj.
- Annie Besant on September 1916 started the Home Rule movement and its headquarter was at Adiyar near Madras.
- Lucknow Session of Congress 1916 was presided over by Ambika Charan Majumdar (Moderate leader) where both Extremist and Moderate leaders were united.
- Government of India Act 1919 or Montagu- Chelmsford Reform Act was passed to establish a responsible Government in India.
- On 9th January 1915, Gandhi ji returns to India from South Africa at the age of 46.
- In 1916 Gandhi Ji founded Sabarmati Ashram at Ahmadabad (Gujarat) to preach the idea of truth and non-violence.
- Champaran Satyagraha – 1917
- Kheda Satyagraha – 1917
- Ahmadabad Mill Strike – 1918
- Rowlatt Act Satyagraha February,1919
- Gandhi ji founded the Satyagraha Sabha in February, 1919. In this movement students, middle class, labour, and capitalist participated, and congress as an organisation was nowhere. This was the first mass movement of Gandhi ji.
- Jallianwala Bagh Massacre – 13 April, 1919. People were gathered at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar to protest against the arrest of Saifuddin Kitchlew and Satyapal on 13 April 1919.
- On 1st August 1920 Khilafat Committee launched a Non-Cooperation movement on triple issues- Punjab wrongs, Khilafat issue, and Demand for Swaraj.
- Therefore, Non-Cooperation Movement was started in 1920.
- In October 1920 All India Trade Union Congress was founded in Bombay by N. M Joshi, Ray Chaudhary. Presided over by Lala Lajpat Ray
- Akali Movement was started in 1920.
- In 1925, SGPC (Shiromani Gurudwara Prabhandak Committee) was founded.
- Congress Khilafat Swaraj Party was formed by CR Das and Motilal Nehru. Also famous for the second split in the congress.
- In 1927, the Workers & Peasant Party (WPP) was formed at Bombay by S.S Mirajkar, K. N Juglekar, and S.V Ghate.
- In 1924, H.R.A (Hindustan Republican Association) was formed at Kanpur. Its members were CS Azad, Sachin Sanyal, and Ramprasad Bismil.
- In 1929, HSRA (Hindustan Socialist Republic Association) was formed at Firozeshah Kotla Delhi. Bhagat Singh joined HSRA.
- On 9 August, 1925 Kakori Train Dacoit, in this conspiracy case Ram Prasad Bismil, Rajendra Lahiri, Roshan Lal, and Asafaqullah khan were hanged to death.
- On 23rd March, 1931 Bhagat Singh, Rajguru, and Sukhdev were hanged to death in Lahore Conspiracy Case.
- On 8 November, 1927 Simon Commission was appointed by the British Conservative government under Stanley Baldwin. To inquire in the working system of Government in the country after the reform act of 1919.
- Nehru Report- 1928 for dominion status, universal adult franchise, etc.
- Jinnah’s 14 point programme was on 31st March, 1929.
- 1929 Lahore Session of INC presided by Jawaharlal Nehru where the resolution of Purna Swaraj was passed by congress and decided to launch a Civil Disobedience movement under the leadership of Gandhi ji.
- On 26th January, 1930 Independence Day was celebrated for the 1st time.
- Civil Disobedience Movement was started with the Dandi March. From 12 March to 6 April , 1930 Gandhi ji along with his 78 followers marched from Sabarmati Ashram to Dandi and broke the salt law by making salt on 6th April 1930.
- On 12 November 1930, First Round Table Conference was held.
- On 5th March 1931, Gandhi Irwin Pact was signed.
- On 23rd March 1931, the Trial of Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev.
- On 29 March 1931, Karachi Session of INC, presided over by Vallabh Bhai Patel. In this session first time, a resolution of Fundamental Rights and Economic policy was passed.
- On 7th September 1931, Second Round Table Conference was held in which Gandhi ji participated on the behalf of congress.
- On 16th August 1932, Communal or Ramsay Macdonald Award was announced.
- On 26th September 1932 , Poona pact was signed.
- In November 1932, the Third Round Table Conference was held.
- In 1935, the Government of India Act was passed to create the All India Federation, Provincial Autonomy and Diarchy should be there in the centre.
Towards Quit India Movement
Important Congress Sessions:
√ 1936 – Lucknow (UP) – Presided by J.L Nehru
√ 1937 – Faizpur (Maharashtra) – Presided by J.L Nehru ( First session held in the village)
√ 1938 – Haripura (Gujarat) – Presided by S.C Bose
√ 1939 – Tripuri (M.P) – Presided by S.C Bose
- In September, 1939 IInd World War broke out and India was declared an ally without its consent.
- In 1939 S.C Bose founded Forward Bloc. It was a left party.
- On 10th August, 1940 – August Offer was announced by Lord Linlithgow viceroy to get the support of Indians in the Second World War.
- On 11th March, 1942 Prime Minister Winstill Churchill announced sending a mission under the chairmanship of Sir Stafford Cripps to find out the solution of constitutional deadlock and problems of Indians.
- With the failure of Cripps Mission, Quit India movement was started in 1942 by the Indian leaders and the resolution of Quit India was drafted by Gandhi Ji. Gandhi ji gave a call for Do or Die.
- In 1942 - Indian National Army was founded by Captain Mohan Singh and Niranjan Gill in Singapore. S. C Bose took over its command of 2nd headquarters in Singapore and Rangoon.
- On 21st October, 1943 – Azad Hind Government was set up in Singapore under S.C Bose. There was a women regiment known as Rani Jhansi.
- In 1945, the Second World War was ended.
- In 1945 – Shimla Conference or Wavell Plan was proposed by Lord Wavell to solve the political deadlock.
- In 1946, Cabinet Mission Plan was announced by PM Clement Attlee.
- On 2nd September 1946 - Interim Government was set up under J.L Nehru.
- In March 1947 – Lord Mountbatten was sent to India with an aim to find a way to transfer power. Also known as Plan Balkan.
- On 3rd June Independence of India Act, 1947 was passed by which powers were transferred to two Dominion States India and Pakistan.