- Why did the 'Moderates' fail to carry conviction with the nation about their proclaimed ideology and political goals by the end of the nineteenth century? (Answer in 150 words) 10
- Regionalism is a threat to ‘unity in diversity’ and ‘integrity’ of India. Critically analyse with examples. (15 Marks)
1. Why did the 'Moderates' fail to carry conviction with the nation about their proclaimed ideology and political goals by the end of the nineteenth century? (10 marks)
- The moderates sought reformation of British rule in India. They adopted prayer, petition and protests as their methodology. This yielded little results.
- Proclaimed Ideology of Moderates:
- Believed in the justness of the British rule hence professed complete loyalty to the British.
- They believed that India was yet not ready to stand on her own legs and needed the British for empowering them.
- Believed in-the efficacy of peaceful and bloodless means and constitutional methods.
- Press was used as the platform to discuss various British policies and disseminating them thereby creating awareness.
- Sessions were also used as platforms to pass resolutions or to discuss/protest against the discriminatory laws.
Reasons for failure
- Non-inclusive in nature
- Moderate group consisted mostly of Western-educated elite and privileged indigenous elite such as the Bhadralok in Bengal
- The backward regions and underprivileged groups remained outside their zone of contact and influence, until the entry of Gandh
- As moderates started to become more assertive, the British became unfriendly, and began to encourage Muslims to stay away from the Congress
- Elite nature of demands by Moderates
- Eg. Reforms in recruitment of Civil servants
- Moderates failed to make any notable success- except expanding legislative councils under Indian Councils Act (1892).
- Extremist leaders Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Lala Lajpat Rai, Bipinchandra Pal, Aurobindo Ghosh etc. were great orators and prolific writers in vernacular newspapers. Hence their ideology began to gain more currency and followers - thus sidelining the moderates
- A new stream of ‘extremist’ ideology comprising passive resistance and direct action with the goal of attaining complete independence (Swaraj) appealed to the masses
2. Regionalism is a threat to ‘unity in diversity’ and ‘integrity’ of India. Critically analyse with examples. (15 Marks)
- Regionalism is the expression of a common sense of identity and purpose by people within a specific geographical region, united by its unique language, culture, language, etc.
Regionalism as a threat to national unity and integrity-
- Rise of Insurgency: Regionalism is a threat to the development and unity of the nation as it creates internal security challenges by the insurgent groups, who propagate the feelings of regionalism against the mainstream politico-administrative setup of the country. (eg. Insurgency in North East)
- Regionalism beyond a point can lead to secession. Eg. Growth of Khalistani movement in Punjab.
- Asymmetrical Development: Regional demands undermine national demands as Developmental plans are implemented unevenly
- Challenge to Foreign Policy: Regionalism creates hurdles in international diplomacy. Eg. W. Bengal state government opposing Indo-Bangladesh land agreement.
- Parochial regionalism poses a threat to the sovereignty of the nation.
- The anti-migrant movement which opposes the employment and residence of non-regional people. Such instances create a sense of mistrust among the countrymen. Eg. Son of Soil movement
- Regionalism often promotes Vote-Bank politics, thus weakening national integration.
- Regionalism used to serve vested interests and threaten the syncretic fabric of Indian society.
However, in some cases regionalism acts in a positive way-
- Separate states created for better governance, more autonomy and equitable growth. Eg. Jharkhand separated from Bihar.
- Competitive Federalism: It helps in the development of a spirit of competitive federalism.
- Safety Valve: It provides an outlet to the diverse discourse and concerns of society
- Preservation of local culture. Eg. Tribal culture in North-east
- Enhancing cooperative federalism by fostering the involvement of the States using a bottom-up approach.
- Peace talks with insurgent and secessionist groups.
- Implementation of provisions of Indian Constitution in Article 371-A to 371D in letter and spirit
- Aspirational district programme for developing the most backward regions.
- Giving priority to nationalism over regionalism
- Schemes like "Ek Bharat-Shreshtha Bharat" have been launched by the GOI to celebrate unity in diversity culture.
- Therefore, in principle, regionalism need not be regarded as an unhealthy or anti-national phenomenon, unless it takes a militant, aggressive turn to encourage the growth of secessionist tendencies