August 9, 1942 is important milestone in India’s history. The British were rapidly losing power not only in India but all over the world. Indians were angered for being forced into World War 2 on Britain’s behalf and the protest against the British rule was stronger than ever. Though the quit india movement did not bore fruits immediately, it certainly paved the way for India’s independence 5 years after. Today we celebrate Kranti Diwas by looking back over the factors that gave birth to the quit India movement
1. World War II
After world war 2 started in 1939, the British took India for granted as being a country that will fight for them. The scale of World War 2 was huge and India was dragged into it. Not only was the British losing much of its resources in the war, it used India to cover the losses.
2. August offer
In 1940, Lord Linlithgow, the Viceroy of India, made the August offer to better facilitate the needs of India and to curb India’s growing voice for freedom. It offered that India will frame its own constitution after the war was over and a greater amount of Indians will be included into Viceroy’s executive council. However, it was refused on the grounds that it did not offer complete independence.
3. Churchill refusing to give in
After the failure of Cripps mission, where again, India was offered a Dominion status but not complete independence, there was no other compromise made. Churchill turned the blind eye towards the protests in India which led to the initiation of quit India movement.
4. Japanese invasion
During the course of World War II, the Japanese came alarmingly close to India. As the Britains were their enemies and India was under British control, the threat of Japanese invasion of India loomed large. Gandhi had stated that the British were unnecessarily harming India in their war with Japan.
5. India united
The refusal of the British to give India complete independence as well as forcing India into World War 2 were one of the biggest mistakes that the British made. There was already a strong voice for independence in India and these two things made it even louder. It united India like never before.
6. British crippled
As the war went on the British were crippled. Their resources stretched. It was evident that even after the allies’ victory, the Great Britain would not be so great anymore. Gandhi seized the opportunity and gave birth to quit india movement.
7. The growing anger
The Amritsar massacre, the Bengal famine, huge taxes levied on Indians, World War 2 and the attitude of Churchill towards India had angered the Indians. So the question was not if but when would the British leave the country. India simple refused to accept any other compromise.
8. The Indian army
The Indian army was employed for the British. Indian army was made to fight for a country which was not theirs. The war had greatly angered many in the army and they made their displeasure known. Indeed, it is said that this factor was also crucial in the eventual independence of India.
Title image: Historydiscussion