- August 18, 2020
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
Ministry of Tourism presented Webinar on “Jallianwala Bagh: A turning point in the Freedom struggle” under DekhoApnaDesh Series as a run up to the Independence Day Celebrations.
- The Rowlatt Act or Black Act which was a Draconian Act passed by the British Government which gave powers to the Police to arrest any person without any reason whatsoever.
- The purpose of the Act was to curb the growing nationalist upsurge in the country. Gandhi called upon the people to do Satyagraha against such oppressive “Act”.
- Jallianwala Bagh was then a barren land where people would meet often and use to have peaceful protest. This made the British nervous as they had never seen any resistance.
- SaifuddinKitchlu and Dr. Satyapal were renowned national leaders of the city of Amritsar.They organized Satyagraha against Rowlatt Act.
- People from all sects participated in peaceful gatherings that happened in Jallianwala Bagh. This led to lot of misconceptions and misunderstanding among the Britishers.
- The British Government ordered the arrest of Dr. Kitchlu and Dr. Satyapal. The news of their arrest evoked strong reaction among the people of Amritsar.
- On 9th April 1919, Mahatma Gandhi was arrested and people were unable to understand the reason behind the arrest.
- When news of Gandhi’s arrest reached Amritsar on the 10th, a large and angry crowd collected on the streets. British banks were set on fire and three bank managers murdered. The violence continued through the 10th and 11th April.
- With the police unable to control the crowds, the city was placed under de facto martial law. The Collector handed over charge to Brigadier-General Reginald Dyer, who had come with a contingent of Gurkha and Pathan troops.
- On Sunday, 13 April 1919 Dyer, anticipated that a major insurrection could take place, thus had banned all meetings.
- This notice was not widely disseminated, and many villagers gathered in the Bagh to celebrate the Indian festival of Baisakhi, and peacefully protest the arrest and deportation of two national leaders, Satyapal and SaifuddinKitchlew.
- Dyer and his troops entered the garden, blocking the main entrance behind them, took up position on a raised bank, and with no warning opened fire on the crowd
- The British Government established a Committee to inquire into the events, and the Hunter Commission Report includes evidence taken in relation to the events in Amritsar.
- In the final report submitted in March 1920, the Committee unanimously condemned Dyer’s actions. However, the Hunter Committee did not impose any penal or disciplinary action against General Dyer.
- Rabindranath Tagore renounced his knighthood in protest and Mahatma Gandhi gave up the title of Kaiser-i-Hind, bestowed by the British for his work during the Boer War.