Government of India Act 1935


After the Poona Pact of 1932, Britishers failed to Balkanise the Indian Subcontinent on the basis of Casteism. The next development in Indian Politics was coming of Government of India Act 1935.

The Government of India Act 1935 contained many revolutionary features. But now, Indian were ready to surrender to their demand for total independence. Indian leaders did not want to compromise on their demand.


The Government of India Act of 1935, established the federal court in India. But the decision of Privy Council was still superior. The most important provision of this act was Indian Federation. India became a federation of provinces or states.

Government of India Act 1935: Indian Federation
Government of India Act 1935: Indian Federation
  • The Princely States, the nominated members represented the Princely States.
  • The British States, discriminate voting was there in the British States to elect the representatives.

The concept of Indian Federation was a revolutionary point. Because for the first time Britisher Government accepted India as a single unit from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Gujarat to Arunachal Pradesh.


For the first time, British Government adopted “LIVE AND LET US LIVE” policy with the foreign nations.Brittish Government also gave independence to Burma. It may be because of the European dynamics under Hitler and Mussolini.

The Government of India Act 1935 provided the provision of three lists; Central List, Provincial List and Concurrent List. The present constitution of India adopted 75 percent of its values and content from the Government of India Act 1935.

The Government of India Act 1935 came out with a provision of dyarchy at the centre and gave provincial autonomy. So, under the provincial autonomy election took place in 1937. Therefore these elections led to the formation of 28 months government in 1937.


28 Months of Government of Congress in British Province
28 Months of Government of Congress in British Province

The 28 months of Congress Government in British Provinces proved very beneficial for the freedom struggle of India. It carried on till 1939, with the beginning of World War-II, the situation started changing in India.

This was because of the following reasons,

  • Britain, without consulting Indian leaders declared that India is on the side of Britain. Britisher also declared that India is committed to fighting for the freedom of Poland.

But Gandhi immediately reacted on this issue. He said,

How can a slave nation fight for the independence of another slave? And if Britain respects the principles of independence it should immediately liberate India.”


So, British government instead of listening followed the policy of divide and rule. Britishers have played all their face cards to divide the Indian people. Therefore, now they played an ace card and declared Indian National Congress as a Hindu Organisation.

So, in reaction to this Congress ministers resigned from their provinces. Therefore, resignation created the political deadlock in India as Britishers were busy in the World War-II.

It was not possible for Britain to fight on double fronts and they came with August Offer in 1940. We will discuss the August Offer later. Before the August Offer, we are going to discuss the internal crisis in Indian National Congress during the 1940s.

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