The Quit India Movement
The Quit India Movement was the last large scale movement organised by Mahatma Gandhi.
Gandhiji launched this movement by giving the slogan of Do or Die.
Reasons for Launching Quit India Movement
The Cripps Mission failed to solve India's constitutional problems.
This gave rise to discontent, resentment and anger.
The people were full of mistrust and hostility towards the British.
During the second world war, in 1942, the war situation became even worse as Japan was rapidly advancing towards India.
There was a constant increase of the threat of Japanese invasion on India.
Congress leaders believed that in order to save India from Japanese attack, it is necessary that the British should go back from India.
The responsibility of the Japanese attack on India fell on the British as they were the rulers of India and were direct enemy of Japan.
Gandhiji believed that a systematic and peaceful withdrawal of the British was the only way to save India.
The Quit India Resolution
On August 8, 1942 a meeting of the All India Congress Committee was held in Bombay.
The meeting passed the famous Quit India resolution against the British.
Gandhiji said, ”I am not going to be satisfied with anything short of complete freedom…we shall do or die.”
On August 9, 1942, several Congress leaders along with Gandhiji were arrested in the early hours of the morning.
Congress funds were confiscated, and Gandhiji was also put behind bars.
Congress was declared illegal and all of its activities were banned by the government.
Public life came to a standstill and all business activities were stopped.
People started burning post offices, bridges and police stations. Notorious police officers were shot.
There was a lot of tension of movement and the government panicked and adopted a repressive policy.
Thousands of people were imprisoned without any trial.
The imprisoned people were tortured as they were lathi-charged, fired upon, beaten up and given shocks on a daily basis.
Women were insulted and humiliated. Children were beaten mercilessly.
Many villages were looted and burnt. Collective fines were also imposed.
Using these practices, the government succeeded in crushing the movement within a few weeks.
Though the revolt was short-lived but it was very intense. About 10,000 people were killed in the shootout and about 70,000 were put behind bars.
Significance of Quit India Movement
People from every religion and profession participated in the movement.
Thousands of people including children participated in the demonstrations and made British realise the feeling of nationalism.
People were brutally tortured but they showed outstanding courage and sacrifice against foreign power.
This made British realise that the day is not very far off when they have to leave the country.
The Cripps Mission failed to solve India's constitutional problems. This gave rise to discontent, resentment and anger.
In the second world war, Japan was rapidly advancing towards India.
Congress leaders thought that to save India from Japanese attack, it is necessary that the British should withdraw from India.
On August8, 1942 a meeting of the All India Congress Committee was held in Bombay and passed the famous Quit India Resolution was passed.
Gandhiji raised the slogan of 'do or die' and announced that this would be his last struggle for India's independence.
Thousands of people participated in the movement and sacrificed their life.
This movement realised the British government that the day is not very far off when they have to leave India.