Back in Time is ED’s newspaper-like column that reports an incident from the past as though it had happened just yesterday. It allows the reader to relive it several years later, on the date it occurred.
7th August 1905: With the zeal and pride to save the mother India, the Indian National Congress (INC) united in the Calcutta Town Hall and took a remarkable decision to boycott all British Goods to adopt the Swadeshi movement. The Swadeshi movement simply means that the Indian citizens will restrict the use of British goods, and rather use goods made in India.
This decision came after the Viceroy of India, Lord Curzon announced the decision of partitioning Bengal in 1903. The Indians realized that the Britishers were well-aware of the rising nationalism and solidarity amongst the people of India and hence, decided to attack their unity by partitioning Bengal.
However, influenced by Bal Gangadhar Tilak’s idea to adopt the Swadeshi movement, the Indian National Congress decided to boycott British goods.
Though the movement was specifically to stand against the partition of Bengal, the movement wasn’t limited just to Calcutta. Instead, it spread to other states as well. It was one of the most successful movements initiated by Indians against the Britishers and their policies.
The INC encouraged people to burn goods that were imported from Britain, such as Manchester cloth and Liverpool salt. All those who participated in the Swadeshi movement, pressured Lord Curzon and Britishers to repeal the decision of partitioning Bengal.
A variety of petitions were signed and the message of the Swadeshi movement was disseminated through newspapers like Hitabadi, Sanjibadi and Bengalee.
People sang Vande Mataram in unison to showcase the Britishers that come what may, the Indians will always be united and stand strong against the unjust policies of East India Company. Another way of showing solidarity was by tying rakhis on each other’s hands.
In other states, outside Bengal, the Swadeshi movement was led by Bal Gangadhar Tilak in Poona and Bombay, by Lala Lajpat Rai and Ajit Singh in Punjab, by Syed Haider Raza in Delhi, and Chidambaram Pillai in Madras.
Also, in 1906, in another session held by Congress in Calcutta, where Dadabhai Naoroji was the President, the INC declared that Swaraj or self-government is the new goal of the INC and they shall work upon it.
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This post is tagged under: Independence movement, swadeshi movement, boycott british goods, khadi, charkha, gandhi ji, mahatma gandhi, calcutta, indian independence
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