Mass Movement: Quit India Movement 1942

We are moving forward on our path of freedom. We have almost reached there. The 1940s started with mass movements and agitations from pan-India. Everyone except few fanatic leaders were in favour of Total Independence. Everyone was starving to see the independent India.

British Government came out with Cripps Mission with some provisions to pacify the Indian leaders. But Congress leaders did not accept the provisions. So, in the response to Cripps Mission, Quit India Movement was started. In this movement, Gandhi gave slogan of Do-or-Die. So, here in this post, we will understand the outburst of Quit India Movement.

Quit India Movement

After the failure of Cripps Mission, every section of the Indian society was in frustration. So, Gandhi as mass mobiliser started his campaign in April 1942 with the name “Angrezo Bharat Chhodo!!!!!“. Gandhi was of the opinion,

Whatever the consequences… to India, her real safety and Britain’s too lie in an timely and orderly withdrawal from India.

Actually, Japan was showing extravagance valour in the World War-II. Japan was an allied power, which was creating trouble for all the powers of that time. So, in fear of Japanese invasion in India, because India was a British Colony, Gandhi wrote in his Harijan,

The presence of the British in India is an invitation to Japan to invade India. Their withdrawal removes that bait. So, leave India in God’s hands or in modern parlance, to anarchy. Then all parties will fight one another like dogs or will when real responsibility faces them come to a reasonable agreement.

So, All India Congress Working Committee met on 8th August 1942 and came out with resolution demanding the withdrawal of the British forces from India.

Quit India Movement
Quit India Movement

Quit India Movement Features

Congress Working Committee expressed the opinion,

The immediated ending of British rule in India is an urgent necessity both for the sake of India and for the success of the cause of the United Nations. The continuation of that rule is ddegrading and enfeebling India and making her progressively less capable of defending herself and of contributing to the cause of world freedom.

But unfortunately, on the morning of 9th August 1942, all the Congress leaders including Gandhi got arrested by the British Government. But this time people did not give up on the government. They themselves led the Quit India Movement.

There were numerous acts of violence and destruction or damage to public property and in quite a number of places., there was a breakdown of government machinery. The government repressed this movement with large forces and several were put to death or thrown to prison.

But the main feature of this movement was that all the sections of Indian society fought together against the alien government. Capitalists provided finance, the Middle class provided leadership and Warrior or Peasantry class provided mass for the movement.

Though the movement was at its peak, on the other hand, Muslim League leaders especially Mohammad Ali Jinnah was planning for the partition of India on the basis of religion. Muslim League observed 23rd March 1943 as “Pakistan Day“.

Mohammad Ali Jinnah sent a message to the Muslim population of India stating that the scheme of Pakistan was the final “national” goal of Muslim India. In the coming post, we will discuss the Wavell Plan of 1945.

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