Vande Mataram Movement
A self-sufficiency movement that was a part of the Indian freedom movement and influenced Indian nationalism was the Vande Mataram Movement. As a coordinated response to Bengal’s partition, the Vande Mataram Movement started in 1905 and continued until 1908. In actuality, it was the pre-Gandhian movement with the greatest degree of accomplishment.
Bengal was divided after the British Government’s choice was made public in December 1903, to the chagrin of many Indians. As a result, on August 7, 1905, the Swadeshi movement was officially established from Town Hall in Calcutta with the intention of decreasing dependence on imported products and increasing domestic production. The Vande Mataram Movement will be covered in this article, which will be helpful for UPSC exam preparation.
Read about: Indian National Movement
Vande Mataram Movement History
On July 4, 1905, Lord Curzon made the Partition of Bengal formal announcement. The Separation Act became operative on October 16, 1905. Administrative ease was Partition’s authorised description. However, the true objective was to create divisions between Hindus and Muslims in Indian culture as well as between moderates and extremists in Congress.
With the Kali Puja festival, Bipin Chandra Pal launched the campaign and was the first Indian leader to tour the country before Gandhi. Patriotic melodies were written by Nabakrishna Chakravarty and Rabindranath Tagore. Swadeshi and Swaraj was the movement’s catchphrase. Rabindranath Tagore established Shanti Niketan under Swadeshi, and Satish Mukherjee established Dawn Society to promote local education. As a sign of Hindu-Muslim unity, Tagore called for the celebration of Rakhi Bandhan and penned articles titled “Atma Shakti.”
Read about: Faraizi Movement
Vande Mataram Movement and Partition of Bengal
The most important thing that happened under Lord Curzon’s rule was the division of Bengal. The main reason for doing it was managerial simplicity. Lord Curzon served as India’s viceroy from 1899 to 1905. During his viceroyalty, the division of Bengal Province became effective on October 16, 1905.
The anti-partition campaign was started by those who understood Lord Curzon’s true motivations. They created the anti-partition movement to prevent division, and since this reflected the nationalistic sentiment of Indians, they gave it the name Swadeshi movement. A well-liked method for removing British rule and enhancing the nation’s fiscal situation was the Vande Mataram Movement.
Read about: Temple Entry Movement
Vande Mataram Movement and Mass Participation
Students from Bengal took a significant part in the Swadeshi agitation. They participated in picketing efforts against stores that sold foreign clothing as well as practicing and promoting Swadeshi. The administration did everything it could to keep the students quiet. Schools and colleges whose pupils actively participated in the Swadeshi agitation were given orders to be punished.
Discipline was applied to students who were deemed guilty of taking part in nationalist agitation. Many of them received fines, were dismissed from schools and colleges, were detained, and occasionally were beaten by officers with lathes. One noteworthy aspect of the Swadeshi unrest was the active involvement of women. Urban middle-class women, who are typically homemakers, participated in processions and picketing. From that point on, they were expected to actively participate in the nationalist effort.
Many well-known Muslims supported the Vandemataram Movement, including Guznavi, a businessman, Liaquat Hussain, a well-known agitator, and Abdul Rasul, a well-known barrister. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad enlisted in a radical extremist group. Many other middle- and upper-class Muslims supported Partition on the grounds that East Bengal would have a Muslim majority, headed by the Nawab of Dhaka (who received a loan of Rs 14 lakh from the Government of India), stayed neutral, or even opposed it.
The officials urged others, including the Nawab of Dhaka, to embrace a communal outlook. One of the reasons for partition, according to Lord Curzon, was “to invest the Mohammedans in Eastern Bengal with a unity they have not experienced since the days of the old Mussalman Viceroys and Kings,” he said in an address in Dhaka.”
Read about: Akali Movement
Vande Mataram Movement Significance
Compared to earlier movements headed by national leaders, the Vandemataram Movement was very distinctive. In contrast to the practise of “prayer and petition,” this movement sought a programme of direct political action. The Vandemataram movement tried to have Bengal’s partition revoked in its early stages.
However, it ultimately broadened its objectives to include achieving complete independence from foreign rule. The Swadeshi movement’s “boycott” component intended to put financial pressure on Manchester mill-owners so they would put pressure on the British government to revoke Partition.
The “boycott” did not, however, only apply to British products as time went on. It was used more broadly to refer to anything alien, especially British. The Swadeshi movement had major cultural significance. Bengali writing grew in popularity during the Swadeshi era. The patriotic works and creations of Rabindranath Tagore and Rajanikanto Sen had a magical effect on the public’s feeling of patriotism.
Read about: Peasant Movements
Vande Mataram Movement Impact
Between 1905 and 1908, it caused a substantial decline in imports from abroad. Young people became more fervently nationalistic as a consequence of the movement and turned to violence to end British dominance. In 1909, the Morley-Minto reforms were the result of the British government being forced to make some accommodations for Indians. Gopal Krishna Gokhale played a key role in the creation of these changes.
Organizations dedicated to Swadeshi have been created. The Bengal National College was established in the same manner as many other national schools and colleges across the nation, Shantiniketan, the Shantiniketan of Rabindranath Tagore. In order to coordinate the country’s educational system, the National Council of Education was founded in August 1906. To offer technical instruction, a Bengal Institute of Technology was founded.
Swadeshi textile mills, soap and match factories, tanneries, banks, insurance firms, and shops were among the establishments that came about as a consequence. Additionally, it boosted the Indian home industry. The resurgence of Indian industries and the demand for locally produced products went hand in hand. Foreign products like clothing, sugar, salt, and other luxuries were shunned and even set on fire. Additionally, the Vandemataram Movement led to a social boycott of both foreign-goods buyers and vendors.
Read about: Aligarh Movement
Vande Mataram Movement Issues
Because of the efforts of Nawab Salimullah of Dhaka and the founding of the Muslim League, the Vandemataram Movement was badly organised and failed to bring Hindus and Muslims together. Separate electorates became a problem in order to help Islam politically. The Vandemataram Movement suffered as a consequence from a small mass base.
Since the Vandemataram Movement did not address the complaints of the peasants, including the lack of uniformity in the land revenue system, tenant rights, and the prevention of land grabbing, the peasants did not join the Vandemataram Movement. However, the Vandemataram Movement was sparked by the division of Bengal from 1903 to 1908. The action failed to stay at the high pitch it had attained.
Read about: Ahmadiyya Movement
Vande Mataram Movement UPSC
The Swadeshi Movement is another name for the Vandemataram Movement. It was a campaign against Bengali partition. In 1905, Bengal Province was split in half by Viceroy Lord Curzon. Bengali people marked a day of mourning on October 16 when partition took effect. The anti-partition movement’s prayer hymn, Vandemataram, was written by Bakim Chandra Chatterjee.
Read about: Rowlatt Act