Cripps Mission and Quit India Movement -Part 17

Cripps Mission (1942)

  • In the meantime, the Viceroy, Lord Linlithgow expanded his executive council by including five more Indians into it in July 1941.
  • However, in the midst of worsening wartime international situation, the British government in its continued effort to secure Indian cooperation sent Sir Stafford Cripps to India on 23 March 1942.
  • This is known as Cripps Mission.
  • The main recommendations of cripps were:
  • The promise of Dominion status to India.
  • Protection of miniorities.
  • Setting up of a constituent assembly in which there would be representatives from the Princely states along with those of the British provinces.
  • There would be provision for any province of British India not prepared to accept this constitution, either to retain its present constitutional position or frame a constitution of its own.
  • The major political parties of the country rejected the Cripps proposals.
  • Gandhi called Cripp’s proposals as a ‘Post- dated cheque’.
  • They did not like the rights of the Princely states either to send their representatives to the constituent assembly or to stay out of the Indian Union.
  • The Muslim league was also dissatisfied as its demand for Pakistan had not been conceded in the proposal.

Quit India Movement (1942-1944)

  • The failure of the Cripps mission and the fear of an impending Japanese invasion of India led Mahatma Gandhi to begin his campaign for the British to quit India.
  • Mahatma Gandhi believed that an interim government could be formed only after the British left India and the Hindu- Muslim problem sorted out.
  • The All India congress committee met at Bombay on 8 August 1942 and passed the famous Quit India Resolution.
  • On the same day, Gandhi gave his call of ‘do or die’.
  • On 8th and 9th August1942, the government arrested all the prominent leaders of the congress.
  • For once, this pre-panned action of the government left the Indian people without leadership.
  • Mahatma Gandhi was kept in prison at Poona.
  • Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Abul Kalam Azad and other leaders were imprisoned in the Ahmednagar fort.
  • At this time, leadership was provided by Ram Manohar Lohia, Achyuta and S.M.Joshi.
  • The role of Jayaprakash Narain in this movement was important.
  • Large number of students also left their school and colleges to join the movement.
  • The youth of the nation also participated in this movement with patriotism.
  • Strikes demonstrations and public meetings were organized in various towns and cities.
  • Slowly the movement reached the rural areas.
  • In 1943, as the movement gained further momentum, there were armed attacks on government buildings in Madras and Bengal.
  • In 1944 Mahatma Gandhi was released from jail.
  • Quit India Movement was the final attempt for country’s freedom.
  • The British government ordered for 538 rounds of firing.
  • Nearly 60,229 persons were jailed.
  • At least 7,000 people were killed.
  • This movement paved the way for India’s freedom.
  • It aroused among Indians the feelings of bravery, enthusiasm and total sacrifice.

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