- The Delhi Manifesto, issued in October 1929, was a response to Lord Irwin’s declaration regarding the Round Table Conference to be held in London. Here are the key points of the Delhi Manifesto:
- Purpose of the Round Table Conference: The leaders demanded that it should be made clear that the purpose of the conference was not to discuss when Dominion Status (full self-government) should be granted to India, but rather to formulate a scheme for its implementation.
- Assurance from the British Government: The leaders sought assurance from Lord Irwin that the demands put forward by the Indian National Congress and other parties would be considered and addressed during the Round Table Conference.
- Implementation of Constitutional Reforms: The leaders emphasized the need for the conference to focus on formulating a concrete plan for the implementation of constitutional reforms that would lead to self-government for India.
- Representation at the Conference: The leaders called for the inclusion of representatives from all major political parties and groups in India at the Round Table Conference to ensure a comprehensive and inclusive discussion on the future governance of India.
- Despite the Delhi Manifesto, Lord Irwin personally informed Mahatma Gandhi that he was not in a position to give the assurance they were demanding. This set the stage for further negotiations and discussions during the Round Table Conference and subsequent developments in the Indian independence movement.
The Lahore Session of the Indian National Congress in 1929 was a significant milestone in the Indian independence movement. It was during this session that the idea of “Poorna Swaraj” (complete independence) was officially adopted as the sole and honourable goal for Indians. Here are some key points about the Lahore Session and the movement toward Poorna Swaraj:
- Venue and Significance: The Lahore Session was held in Lahore, the capital city of Punjab. It is considered one of the most memorable Congress sessions due to the declaration of Poorna Swaraj as the ultimate objective of the Indian people.
- Jawaharlal Nehru’s Presidential Address: Jawaharlal Nehru, one of the prominent leaders of the Indian National Congress, delivered a powerful and inspiring presidential address. He called for unity and proclaimed the initiation of an “open conspiracy” to liberate the country from foreign rule.
- Unfurling the Tricolour Flag: At midnight on December 31, 1929, on the banks of the river Ravi, the tricolour flag of Indian independence was unfurled amidst cheers and jubilation. This symbolic act represented the strong determination and resolve of the Indian people to achieve their freedom.
- The Independence Pledge: On January 26, 1930, public meetings were held across the country where the Independence Pledge was read out and affirmed collectively. This program was widely successful, with the pledge being recited in local languages and the national flag being hoisted in villages, towns, and gatherings of all sizes.
- The Lahore Session and the adoption of Poorna Swaraj as the goal marked a significant shift in the Indian independence movement. It set the stage for the subsequent Civil Disobedience Movement and other mass protests that aimed to challenge British rule and achieve complete independence for India.
- The Simon Commission faced strong criticism and opposition from Indians due to its composition and lack of Indian representation. The Indian National Congress and other political parties boycotted the Commission, and widespread protests and demonstrations were held against it. The Commission’s recommendations and reports were rejected by the Indian leaders and the public.
- In response to the Simon Commission, the Indian leaders and parties took various actions. The Nehru Report, drafted by Motilal Nehru and his committee, presented a comprehensive scheme for constitutional reforms in India. It emphasized self-government and fundamental rights, and it rejected the concept of separate electorates.
- The Indian response to the Simon Commission and the subsequent developments, such as the Nehru Report, the Lahore Session, and the declaration of Poorna Swaraj, marked a turning point in the Indian independence movement. The demand for complete independence gained momentum, and the Indian people united in their pursuit of freedom from British rule.
- The Simon Commission and its aftermath played a significant role in shaping the course of the Indian independence movement. The demands for self-government, constitutional reforms, and complete independence became increasingly prominent, leading to future struggles and movements that eventually resulted in India’s independence in 1947.
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