Quit India Movement: an Ultimate Showcase of Indian’s Power
“Do or Die”, quoted by Gandhiji during “Bharat Chodo Aandolan”.
This is not just a slogan or a quote, but this portrays the mindset of every suppressed Indian, who went through series of humiliated events, carried out by Cruel Britishers. This was not the sole ideology of Gandhiji rather it was the words that every Indian at that time wanted to say and act for the same.
This was the time of August 1942, when suddenly a deadly wave of thoughts went against the centenary rule of Whites in India. This was the same time, when India sensed the feeling of sacrifice in each of its constituents. This was the moment which we recently cherished while celebrating 75th anniversary of the same, and this is the event which is called out by the name of August Kranti, which led our natives to one goal, that was, to get independence from the draconian rule of the Crown.
It all went to May 1942, when Mahatma Gandhi’s call to Britain was to Leave India to God or if this was too much for them then leave her to anarchy. The reaction to this saying takes up to the event which took place in July 1942 where a resolution was passed at Wardha by the Congress Working Committee which was termed as “The Wardha Resolution” and was popularly known as Quit India Resolution which explicitly demanded, decimation of the Crown’s rule.
It was ratified by the All India Congress Committee, with minor amendments and regarding this, a non-violent mass struggle under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi was sanctioned. The session began on August 7, 1942 and concluded post-midnight of August 8, 1942 at Gowalia Tank Maidan, Bombay.
Gandhi while addressing, urged the masses to act as an independent nation and requested each one to not follow the orders given or circulated by the Britishers, in his speech titled as “Karo Ya Maroon.” Furthermore, he opined that the tool of ahinsa (non-violence) is the only way which can lead all of us to the path of getting Swaraj and is the only option which will assure our Independence.
Hereby provided are the excerpts from his speech.
“Let me, however, hasten to assure that I am the same Gandhi as I was in 1920. I have not changed in any fundamental respect. I attach the same importance to non-violence that I did then. If at all, my emphasis on it has grown stronger. There is no real contradiction between the present resolution and my previous writings and utterances.
The proposal for the withdrawal of British power did not come out of anger. It came to enable India to play its due part at the present critical juncture.
But it is my conviction that in as much as these struggles were fought with the weapon of violence they failed to realise the democratic ideal. In the democracy which I have envisaged, a democracy established by non-violence, there will be equal freedom for all. Everybody will be his own master. It is to join a struggle for such democracy that I invite you today. Once you realize this you will forget the differences between the Hindus and Muslims, and think of yourselves as Indians only, engaged in the common struggle for independence.”[i]
These were the wisdom words which were delivered by the father of our Nation Mr. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. The next day, after winding up of this session, India faced a tragic incident which took place against the Freedom Struggle fighters in the form of their imprisonment.
Gandhi, Nehru and many other leaders of the Indian National Congress were arrested by the British Government, due to which disorderly and non-violent demonstrations took place across the country in various ways and throughout numerous days after that.
This movement, more than anything, united the Indian people against British rule. With full support of the Nationals in 1944, Gandhi continued his resistance and went on a 21-day fast, as well as by end of the Second World War, Britain's place in the world was changed a lot dramatically and the demand for independence could no longer be ignored which was ultimately fulfilled on 15th August 1947.
Therefore, “Quit-India Movement” due to these very reasons has been given a prominent place in our freedom struggle’s history, as it showed the power, spirit and authority of Indians binding them together as well as setting-up an example that how much effective Unity In Diversity was and is, in present times too!
[i] One India Staff Writer, Interesting Facts: 1942- The Quit India Movement, One India (August 18,
Author: Harshit Sharma
College: Amity Law School, Amity University Madhya Pradesh
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