History Notes

Quit India Movement

7: Quit India Movement

v Events leading to Quit India Movement:

·        Resignation of Congress Minister : British declared that India was at was against Germany during World War II without consulting with  Indian leaders. Congress demanded for freedom as enslaved nation cannot aid others to fight for freedom. British started raising other communities and princely states against congress. Due to above reasons Congress asked its ministers resign.

o   Viceroy became happy as congress had control over several provinces.

o   Muslim league was jubliant (feeling or expressing great happiness and triumph) over resignation of congress ministers and offered their friendship towards British. They celebrated this day as ‘Day of deliverance’ or ‘Thanks-giving’.

·        August Offer (1940) : In August Offer, Lord Linlithgow recommended:

o   Setting up a War Advisory Council constituting from Indian states and British provinces.

o   Expansion of Viceroy’s Executive Council immediately.

o   Setting up a ‘body’ to frame the Constitution after the war.

o   Assurance, that the transfer of power will not be ‘to any system of government whose authority is directly denied by large and powerful elements in Indian national life’.

Congress rejected it as it assured for ‘communal veto’ i.e. no constitutional scheme will be accepted until it is approved by minorities.

Muslim League rejected it as it do not gave clear assurance for the formation of ‘Pakistan’.

v Causes of Quit India Movement:

·        Failure of Cripps mission

§  Reforms proposed

o   India would get a dominion status when the war would end.

o   Constituent Assembly would set up. It would consist of members elected by the Lower House of Indian Legislature and representative of Princely states nominated by their ruler.

o   Provinces would be free to join the Indian Union.

o   Provision would be made for protection of racial and religious minorities.

§  Cause of Failure

o   Muslim League rejected as it does not accept the formation of Pakistan specifically

o   Congress apposed the principle of non-accesion of provinces.

o   Plan involved partition of country. Hindu Mahasabha rejected the proposal for same.

o   People of Princely states had no right to elect their representative. Representative was nominated by their ruler.

·        Japanese threat : With the Japanese victory over Burma, it was at India’s doorsteps. Presence of British was a bait for Japanese to attack India.

v Quit India Movement resolution was passed on 8th August 1942 in Mumbai.

v The movement was put down with brutality. Peoples were lathicharged , machine gunned and bombed from air. All leaders were arrested and sent to unknown location. Congress was declared illegal.

v Impact :

·        It was evident that British could no longer rule India against the wishes of Indians.

·        People of all section of society participated in his movement.

·        It showed the depth of nationalism/ nationalist feeling in hearts of Indians and their capacity to sacrifice and struggle for independence.