Key Factors in the Struggle for Indian Freedom

Essay by jd146005College, UndergraduateB, September 2009

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There were a number of landmark events and factors that led to the eventual decolonization and freedom of India. As explained by Wikipedia “Decolonisation is a political process, frequently involving violence. In extreme circumstances, there is a war of independence, sometimes following a revolution. More often, there is a dynamic cycle where negotiations fail, minor disturbances ensue resulting in suppression by the police and military forces, escalating into more violent revolts that lead to further negotiations until independence is granted. In rare cases, the actions of the native population are characterized by non-violence, with the Indian independence movement led by Mahatma Gandhi being one of the most notable examples, and the violence comes as active suppression from the occupying forces or as political opposition from forces representing minority local communities who feel threatened by the prospect of independence.”. As will be illustrated in the following, much of this directly relates to the decolonization of India.

It is commonly believed that nationalist feelings were not brought to life until a man by the name of Gandhi took over the leadership of the Indian National Conference. Contrary to this belief, such feelings of nationalism had been present in India as early as the mid 19th century. Illustrations of Indian nationalism were represented in various forms all through the course of British Rule. Bengal was the site of a new illustration of economic nationalism. Bengal was divided by the British in 1905, causing a nation-wide Swadeshi movement. This gave huge boost to the struggle for freedom all through the country. On August 7th of 1905 a boycott on foreign goods was declared. At first the Indian National Congress gave only some support to the idea, but was under great persuasion of radical leaders. Due to the consistent influence the Calcutta session of the...