The Revolt of 1857

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The revolt of 1857 is regarded by many as the First War of Indian Independence. It was after this that the Nationalistic Movement in the country gathered momentum. Emergence of press, development of rapid means of transport and communication, and the impact of the contemporary European movement accelerated the growth of this national sentimence. The practice of racial discrimination by the British in all spheres of life also contributed to the unity among different sections of the society to rise against a common enemy. The Phases of Indian Independence

The Indian Nationalist Movement of Indian Independence can be classified into three phases: 1. The Moderate Phase (1885 – 1905)
2. The Extremist Phase (1905 – 1919)
3. The Gandhian Phase (1919 – 1947)
The Moderate Phase
The Moderates were the most active participants of the freedom struggle during this phase and so the name Moderate Phase. It is also sometimes referred to as the Early Nationalist Phase. Dada Bhai Naoroji, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Dinshaw Wacha and Surendranath Bannerjee were some of the famous Moderate leaders. Pin It

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Moderates Created a Wide Awakening
The Moderates were successful in exposing the exploiting character and the evil results of the British policies. This aided them in creating a wide national awakening among the people of the country. They popularized ideas of democracy, civil liberties, secularism, nationalism and trained civilians in the art of political work. Failure of Moderates and Rise of Extremists

Even though they were successful in bringing in a nationalistic awakening, they failed to realize the importance of a mass struggle. They also could not realize the true nature of the British and their policies. So the moderates were not able to pose any major threat to the British rule in India. A more action oriented movement which could take extreme measures became the need of the hour. Subsequently there emerged a group of freedom fighters with a whole new set of ideas and principles, The Extremists. Indian National Movement

For the first time, most of the regions in India were united politically and administratively under a single power (the British rule). It introduced a uniform system of law and government. The introduction of railways, telegraphs and postal services and the construction of roads and canals facilitated communication among the people. All these brought Indians nearer to each other and provided the facility to organise the national movement on an all India basis. The English language played an important role in the growth of nationalism in the country. The English educated Indians, who led the national movement, developed Indian nationalism and organised it. Western education facilitated the spread of the concepts of liberty, equality, freedom and nationalism and sowed the seeds of nationalism. The Indian Press, both English and vernacular, had also aroused the national consciousness. The leaders of various organisations like the Brahmo Samaj, Ramakrishna Mission, Arya Samaj, and Theosophical Society generated a feeling of regard for and pride in the motherland. A good deal of anti-British feeling was created by the economic policy pursued by the British government in India. The English systematically ruined the Indian trade and native industries. Therefore, economic exploitation by the British was one of the most important causes for the rise of Indian nationalism. The Revolt of 1857 created a kind of permanent bitterness and suspicion between the British and the Indians. The English feeling of racial superiority grew. India as a nation and Indians as individuals were subjected to insults, humiliation and contemptuous treatment. Lord Lytton arranged the Delhi Durbar at a time when the larger part of India was in the grip of famine. He passed the Vernacular Press Act which curbed the liberty of the Indian Press. His Arms Act was a means to prevent the Indians from keeping arms. All these...
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