Day 4 – Q.2 In what ways did the arrival of Mahatma Gandhi on the national stage catalyse the freedom movement? Explain with the help of suitable examples.

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  • December 1, 2022
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Art & Culture, GS 1, TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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In what ways did the arrival of Mahatma Gandhi on the national stage catalyse the freedom movement? Explain with the help of suitable examples.

राष्ट्रीय मंच पर महात्मा गांधी के आगमन ने स्वतंत्रता आंदोलन को किस प्रकार उत्प्रेरित किया? उपयुक्त उदाहरणों की सहायता से व्याख्या कीजिए।


In this question candidates needs to write about how arrival of mahatma Gandhi catalyzes the national freedom movement, In second part of  answer give some examples to substantiate your points .


Gandhi’s Role in the National Movement or Methods adopted by Mahatma Gandhi to make the Indian National Movement a mass movement. Roles and methods adopted by mahatma Gandhi in the National Movement of India was undoubtedly the most remarkable.


Mahatma Gandhi was the leader who guided India towards Independence. India was under the British rule for over 250 years. Gandhi returned to India from South Africa in 1915 at the request of Gopal Krishna Gokhale.

  • Gandhi’s contribution to the Indian freedom movement cannot be measured in words. He, along with other freedom fighters, compelled the British to leave India. His policies and agendas were non-violent and his words were the source of inspiration for millions.


  • The Champaran agitation in Bihar was Gandhi’s first active involvement into Indian freedom politics. The Champaran farmers were being forced to grow Indigo and were being tortured if they protested.
  • The farmers sought Gandhi’s help and through a calculated non-violent protest, Gandhi managed to win concessions from the authority.


  • When Kheda, a village in Gujarat, was badly hit by floods, the local farmers appealed to the rulers to waive off the taxes. Here, Gandhi started a signature campaign where peasants pledged non-payment of taxes.
  • He also arranged a social boycott of the mamlatdars and talatdars (revenue officials). In 1918, the Government relaxed the conditions of payment of revenue tax until the famine ended.

Khilafat Movement-

  • Gandhi’s influence on the Muslim population was remarkable. This was evident in his involvement in the Khilafat Movement. After the first World War, the Muslims feared for the safety of their Caliph or religious leader and a worldwide protest was being organised to fight against the collapsing status of the Caliph.
  • Gandhi became a prominent spokesperson of the All India Muslim Conference and returned the medals he had received from the Empire during his Indian Ambulance Corps days in South Africa. His role in the Khilafat made him a national leader in no time.

Non-cooperation Movement-

  • Gandhi had realised that the British had been able to be in India only because of the co-operation they received from the Indians. Keeping this in mind, he called for a non-cooperation movement.
  • With the Congress’ support and his indomitable spirit, he convinced people that peaceful non-cooperation was the key to Independence. The ominous day of Jallianwala Bagh Massacre triggered the non-cooperation movement. Gandhi set the goal of Swaraj or self-governance, which since then became the motto of Indian freedom movement.

Salt March-

  • Also known as the Dandi Movement, Gandhi’s Salt March is considered to be a pivotal incident in the history of freedom struggle. At the Calcutta Congress of 1928, Gandhi declared that the British must grant India dominion status or the country will erupt into a revolution for complete independence. The British did not pay heed to this.
  • As a result, on December 31, 1929, the Indian flag was unfurled in Lahore and the next January 26 was celebrated as the Indian Independence Day. Then, Gandhi started a Satyagraha campaign against the salt tax in March 1930. He marched 388 kilometres from Ahmedabad to Dandi in Gujarat to make salt. Thousands of people joined him and made it one of the biggest marches in Indian history.

Quit India Movement-

  • During the Second World War, Gandhi was determined to strike the British Empire with a definitive blow that would secure their exit from India. This happened when the British started recruiting Indians for the war.
  • Gandhi protested strongly and said that the Indians cannot be involved in a war that is in favour of democratic purposes when India itself is not a free country. This argument exposed the two-faced image of the colonisers and within half a decade, they were out of this country.
  • Gandhian phase led to emphasis on Hindus-Muslims Unity. He very well knew that India could not attain freedom without the unity of Hindus-Muslims.Irrespective of religion and caste all people took part in mass movement.
  • Thousands of women came out of their homes and participated in salt satyagraha.
  • All Working class and professionals participated including lawyers, teachers, professors also joined the national movement.
  • Gandhian phase witnessed the involvement of the business class in the movement. Business class participated and gave financial assistance and rejected imported goods.
  • He emphasized the development of cottage and village industries. It was seen that these cottage industries were on the rise and people became more self-reliant.
  • This helped the Indians be less dependent on imports from other countries and the Britishers
  • Under his leadership National movement was inclusive and representative.
  • Ultimately, it can be said that the Gandhian movement helped India attain freedom. Gandhi through his nonviolent method shook the foundation of British rule and defeated the great empire.


Mahatma Gandhi is perhaps the most widely recognized figure of the Indian Nationalist Movement for his role in leading non-violent civil uprisings.his contribution not only leads country towards freedom but become torchlight for many countries to follow the path.

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