"The Revolution in Russia in its beginning was regarded in India as a triumph over despotism; and... it has given impetus to Indian political aspirations."(2)
"Consciously or unconsciously, the Mahatma fully exploited the mass psychology of the people.... He was exploiting many of the weak traits in the character of his countrymen [like inordinate belief in fate and in the supernatural, indifference to modern scientific development, etc.], which had accounted for India's downfall to a large extent.... In some parts of the country the Mahatma began to be worshipped as an Avatar [incarnation of God]."(8)
"More significantly, the religious idiom of Gandhi's politics widened the gulf between the two major communities of the sub-continent, and was probably one of the reasons behind its division into the two states of India and Pakistan in 1947."(11)
"Oh Englishman, the God Gandhiji came in the end and your days have been numbered."(14)
"unscrupulous agitators were circulating to the credulous masses stories of divine attributes and miraculous powers [possessed by Gandhi]. Gandhi's influence was strengthened by a spurious divinity."(17)
"The Congress had built up an organization and acquired a hold over these backward tribes [in Koraput] by making attractive promises...; they also played on their superstition, and in some places Mr Gandhi was deified and temple ritual took place at the Congress office."(19)
"Crushed in the dark misery of the present, she [India] had tried to find relief in helpless muttering and in vague dreams of the past and the future, but he [Gandhi] came and gave hope to her mind and strength to her much-battered body, and the future became an alluring vision".(21)
Gandhi "went to Noakhali [in 1946]. The result was that the Hindus recovered their courage and morale. The Muslims who, to begin with, suspected his bona fides, began slowly to be affected by his presence and his speeches, and saw the error of their ways. That was one of the marvels of non-violence in action..."(23)
The current efforts of the Government and mass media to celebrate the 50th anniversary of India's 'independence' are faced with complete lack of enthusiasm on the part of the common people of the country. Popular disgust at the country's economic, political and social condition is at unprecedented levels. Why has a land so rich in natural, cultural and intellectual resources been reduced to such a state? Some would ascribe the blame merely to the character of the leaders who came after 1947. However, a proper inquiry should lead us to examine the exact nature of the political deal struck in 1947 whereby the Indian State came into existence, and further the events that led to this deal. The present condition of India has its roots in the fate of the freedom struggle. This book traces the course of the Indian freedom movement, the heroic struggles of the common people of our country, and the cunning betrayal of those struggles by the leadership of the Indian National Congress. The respective roles of Gandhi, Nehru, Bhagat Singh, the Communist Party, and others are briefly described, as are most of the major popular agitations for independence. The perspective presented differs sharply with all the establishment views on the topic. The first edition of this book appeared under the title Indian National Congress: How Indian? How National? It is intended for the ordinary reader.
"The evils which resulted to India from the non-admission of natives into the Legislative Council of India were various. Government could never know the inadvisability of the laws and regulations which it passed.... the greatest mischief lay in this that the people misunderstood the views and intentions of the Government.... I do not want to enter here into the question as to how the ignorant and uneducated natives of Hindustan could be allowed a share in the deliberations of the Legislative Council.... All I wish to prove here is that such a step is not only advisable, but absolutely necessary, and that the disturbances are due to the neglect of such a measure.... All causes of rebellion, however various, can be traced to this one." (emphasis added)
"We shall not subvert the British Empire by allowing the Bengali Baboo to discuss his own schools and drains. Rather shall we afford him a safety-valve if we can turn his attention to such innocuous subjects...."
"It will probably be news to many that the Indian National Congress, as it was originally started and has since been carried on, is in reality the work of the Marquis of Dufferin and Ava when that nobleman was Governor-General of India. Mr. A.O. Hume, C.B., had in 1884 conceived the idea that it would be of great advantage to the country if leading Indian politicians could be brought together once a year to discuss social matters and be upon friendly footing with one another. He did not desire that politics should form part of their discussion, for there were recognised political bodies in Calcutta, Bombay, Madras and other parts of India, and he thought that these bodies might suffer in importance if when Indian politicians from different parts of the country came together they discussed politics. His idea further was that the Governor of the Province where the politicians met should be asked to preside over them and that thereby great cordiality should be established between the official classes and the non-official Indian politicians. Full of these ideas he saw the noble Marquis when he went to Simla early in 1885 after having in the December previous assumed the Viceroyalty of India. Lord Dufferin took great interest in the matter and after considering over it for some time he sent for Mr. Hume and told him that, in his opinion, Mr. Hume's project would not be of much use. He said that there was no body of persons in this country who performed the functions which Her Majesty's Opposition did in England. The newspapers, even if they really represented the views of the people, were not reliable and as the English were necessarily ignorant of what was thought of them and their policy in native circles, it would be very desirable in the interests as well of the rulers as of the ruled that Indian politicians should meet yearly and point out to the Government in what respects the administration was defective and how it could be improved; and he added that an assembly such as the proposed should not be presided over by the local Governor for in his presence the people might not like to speak out their minds. Mr. Hume was convinced by Lord Dufferin's arguments and when he placed the two schemes, his own and Lord Dufferin's, before leading politicians in Calcutta, Bombay, Madras, and other parts of the country, the latter unanimously accepted Lord Dufferin's scheme and proceeded to give effect to it. Lord Dufferin had made it a condition with Mr. Hume that his name in connection with the scheme of the Congress should not be divulged so long as he remained in the country, and his condition was faithfully maintained and none but the men consulted by Mr. Hume knew anything about the matter." (R.P. Dutt, India Today, Bombay, 1947)
"Towards the close of Lord Lytton's Viceroyalty, that is, about 1878 and 1879, Mr. Hume became convinced that some definite action was called for to counter the growing unrest. From well-wishers in different parts of the country he received warnings of the danger, to the Government and to the future welfare of India, from the economic suffering of the masses and the alienation of the intellectuals."
"The evidence convinced me at the time about 15 months, I think, before Lord Lytton left that we were in imminent danger of a terrible outbreak.... poor men were pervaded with a sense of the hopelessness of the existing state of affairs... they were convinced they would starve and die, and that they wanted to do something. They were going to do something, and stand by each other, and that something meant violence.... In the existing state of affairs of the lowest half-starving classes, it was considered that the first few crimes could be the signal for hundreds of similar ones, and for a general development of lawlessness, paralysing the authorities and the respectable classes. It was considered also that everywhere the small bands would coalesce into large ones, like drops of water on a leaf; that all the bad characters in the country would join; and that very soon after the bands obtained formidable proportions, a certain small number of the educated classes, at the time desperately, perhaps unreasonably, bitter against the Government, would join the movement, assume here and there the lead, give the outbreak cohesion, and direct it as a national revolt."
"Your revenues, by means of this acquisition (Bengal), will, as near as I can judge, not fall far short for the ensuing year of 250 lacs of Sicca Rupees.... Hereafter they will amount to at least 20 or 30 lacs more. Our civil and military expenses in time of peace can never exceed 60 lacs of Rupees; the Nabob's allowances are already reduced to 42 lacs, and the tribute to the King (the Great Moghul) at 26; so that there will be remaining a clear gain to the Company of 122 lacs of Sicca Rupees, or 1,650,900 sterling..."
"All the benefits we have derived from British rule, all the noble projects of our British rulers, will go for nothing if, after all, the country is to continue sinking deeper and deeper into the abyss of destitution."
"Mr Hume, after acknowledging the honour done him, said that, as the giving of cheers had been entrusted to him, he must be allowed to propose - on the principle of better late than never - giving of cheers, and that not only three, but three times three, and if possible thrice that, for one the latchet of whose shoes he was unworthy to loose, one to whom they were all dear, to whom they were all as children - need he say, Her Most Gracious Majesty the Queen-Empress. "The rest of the speaker's remarks was lost in the storm of applause that instantly burst out, and the asked-for cheers were given over and over."
"Well, then, what is it for which we are now met on this occasion? We have assembled to consider questions on which depends our future, whether glorious or inglorious. It is our good fortune that we are under a rule which makes it possible for us to meet in this manner. (cheers) It is under the civilising role of the Queen and people of England that we meet here together, hindered by none, and are freely allowed to speak our minds without the least fear and the least hesitation. Such a thing is possible under British rule and British rule only. (loud cheers) Then I put the question plainly: Is this Congress a nursery for sedition and rebellion against the British Government? (cries of no, no); or is it another stone in the foundation of the stability of that Government? (cries of yes, yes) There could be but one answer, and that you have already given, because we are thoroughly sensible of the numberless blessings conferred upon us, of which the very existence of this Congress is a proof in a nutshell."
"...provide that the thrifty and hard-working classes will succeed to ownership of the land... the varied classes, having at present no interest in the land, cannot occupy the position, nor enjoy the status, nor discharge the function of landlords. The absence of such a class retards progress in all directions. The presidency of Bengal enjoys this advantage over the rest of India and this alone accounts for its prosperous and progressive conditions". (emphasis added)
"In all old and backward countries like India, there is always only a minority of people who monopolise all the elements of strength. They are socially and religiously in the front ranks, and possess intelligence, wealth, thrifty habits, knowledge, and power of combination. The majority are unlettered, improvident, ignorant, disunited, thriftless, and poor in means. No political manipulation can hold the balance between these two classes, power must gravitate whether there is intelligence and wealth, and it is a hopeless struggle to keep up a poverty-stricken peasantry in the possession of the soil, and divorce the natural union of capital and land.... Democracy cannot be transplanted into the Indian soil at a start, it will take many generations... to raise the Indian peasant to equality with the Brahmin and the Bania."
"...not only had no clear-cut policy on the question [of exploitation of the peasantry by landlords] but did not even pay sufficient attention to it. It did not regard the relation between the tenant and the landlord as a major economic problem, nor did it espouse the cause of the tenants through a general political agitation. The extent to which the problems of the tenantry were ignored by the national leadership may be gauged from the fact that the Indian National Congress had virtually nothing to say about them during the period under study [1885- 1905]."
"desires now to reiterate emphatically this recommendation and to call attention to the profound alarm which has been created by the action of the king in interfering with the existing Permanent Settlement in Bengal and Bihar... and hereby pledges itself to oppose, in all possible legitimate ways, any and all such reactionary attacks on permanent settlements and their holders."
"any proposal to restrict the right of private alienation of lands by legislation as a remedy for the relief of agricultural indebtedness will be a most retrograde measure, and will, in its distant consequences, not only check improvement but reduce the agricultural population to a condition of still greater helplessness. The indebtedness of the agriculturist classes arises partly from their ignorance..."
"Resolved - That this Congress, concurring in the views set forth in previous Congresses, affirms: "- That fully fifty millions of the population, a number yearly increasing, are dragging out a miserable existence on the verge of starvation, and that, in every decade, several millions actually perish by starvation. "- And humbly urges, once more, that immediate steps be taken to remedy this calamitous state of affairs."
"...in view of the unsettled state of public affairs in Europe, and the immense assistance that the people of this country, if duly prepared therefor, are capable of rendering to Great Britain in the event of any serious complications arising, this Congress once again earnestly appeals to the Government to authorise (under such rules and restrictions, as to it may seem fitting) a system of volunteering for the Indian inhabitants of the country, such as may qualify them to support the Government, effectively, in any crisis."
"Simultaneously examinations for all the services should be held both in India and in England.... In India also they must adopt the system for the Uncovenanted Services.... achieve this, and next representation in the Legislative Councils and Indian will have nothing or little to complain (of)."
"...I am a warm Home Ruler for Ireland, but neither myself nor any other Indian is asking for any such Home Rule for India. You must have seen from the Report of the Congress that our demands are far more moderate, in fact are only a further development of the existing institution."
"If England only invites and welcomes the confidence of India, and receives, with kindly consideration, the loyal suggestions (not necessarily adopting all, but treating them with the respect to which they are entitled) of the Congress which, year by year, more and more thoroughly represent the views of the whole thinking portion of the nation, all will be well for both countries. As a great Indian Prince recently said, after hearing the resolutions passed at the several Congresses: `if only these things be conceded, the rule of the British in India will last forever'." (emphasis added)
"What have been its methods? First, quiet teachings and preachings throughout the greater part of the country of simple elementary political truths. The people are taught to recognise the many benefits that they owe to British rule, as also the fact that on the peaceful continuance of that rule depend all hopes for the peace and prosperity of the country. They are taught that the many hardships and disabilities of which they complain are after all, though real enough, small in comparison with the blessings they enjoy, but that all these grievances may be and will be redressed if they all join to press their views and wishes unanimously, but temperately, on the Government here and on the Government and people of England. The sin of illegal or anarchical proceedings are brought home to them, and the conviction is engendered that by united, patient constitutional agitation they are certain ultimately to obtain all they can reasonably or justly ask for, while by any recourse to hasty or violent action they must inevitably ruin their cause and entail endless misery on themselves; and these teachings have gone on so quietly and unostentatiously that they have never once attracted even serious attention, much less unfavourable comment."
"I look upon the Congress movement as an uprising of Indian Native opinion against, not British rule, but Anglo-Indian bureaucracy."
"with a two-fold object - first as a demonstration of their deep resentment at the treatment they were receiving, and secondly to attract the attention of the people in England to their grievances, so that those who were in a position to call the Government of India to account might understand what was taking place in India.... But a weapon like this must be reserved only for extreme occasions.... Above all, let us see to it that there are no fresh divisions in the country in the name of Swadeshism. No greater perversion of its true spirit could be imagined than that.."
"I am sure most of those who speak of this `boycott' mean by it the use, as far as possible, of Swadeshi articles in preference to foreign articles. Now such use is really included in the Swadeshi, but unfortunately the word `boycott' has a sinister meaning to it - it implies a vindictive desire to injure another, no matter what harm you may thereby cause yourself. And I think we would do well to use only the word Swadeshi to describe our present movement, leaving along the word `boycott' which creates unnecessary ill-will against ourselves. Moreover, remember that a strict `boycott' of foreign goods is not at all practicable in our present industrial condition...."
"...the deep murmur was heard again, and one shrill voice cried, `Never!' "...(Surendranath Banerjea seconded Ghosh's nomination.) Hardly had his immense voice uttered ten words when, like the cracking of thunder begins before the lightning ceases, the tumult burst, and no word more was heard. "Waving their arms, their scarves, their sticks, and umbrellas, a solid mass of delegates and spectators on the right of the Chair sprang to their feet and shouted without a moment's pause. Over their head was the label `Central Provinces' - Central Provinces where Nagpur stands and the Congress was to have been; `Remember Nagpur!' they cried; `Remember Midnapur!' where, during the Bengal Provincial Conference a week or two before, Surendranath had attempted to keep the peace against the `extremists', and had actually sat on the same platform as the Superintendent of Police!" (C.H. Phillips, ed. Evolution of India and Pakistan, 1858-1947, documents, London, 1962)
"The difference in the remaining resolution was vital. It went to the root of the difference between the parties, and for the sake of it alone the proposed changes remain worthy of notice. In the original Calcutta resolution the Congress was `of the opinion that the Boycott Movement inaugurated in Bengal by way of protest against the Partition was and is legitimate'. In the new form proposed for discussion in the Subjects Committee, the wording ran: `this Congress is of the opinion that the Boycott of foreign goods resorted to by Bengal by way of protest against the Partition of that province was and is legitimate'. All the difference between the moderates and extremists - just the one point which made genuine conciliation impossible - lay implied in that small difference of wording... `Boycott Movement' might mean the rejection of almost anything - the rejection of foreign goods, of foreign justice, foreign appointments, foreign education, foreign authority, taxation, Government itself. Already, it had been so interpreted, both at the Calcutta Congress and frequently throughout the year. To yield on this point would be to hand over the Congress to the extremists forever, to abandon the first principles of the Congress, which had been to work out the salvation of India in association with the British rulers.... If these first principles were not to be abandoned, if the Congress was to be pledged to call upon India to go her own way, regardless of the English people and the English government, the Congress as it had hitherto existed might as well give up the pretence of existence, and bequeath its effects to a new and different force." (emphasis added)
"There are three classes of people whom we have to consider in dealing with a scheme of this kind. There are the extremists who nurse fanatic dreams that some day they will drive us out of India.... The second group nourish no hopes of this sort, but hope for autonomy or self-government of the colonial species and pattern. And then the third section of this classification ask for no more than to be admitted to co-operation in our administration. "I believe the effect of the Reforms has been, is being, and will be to draw the second class, who hope for colonial autonomy, into the third class, who will be content with being admitted to a fair and full co-operation." (emphasis added)
"You do not realise the enormous reserve of power behind the Government. If the Congress were to do anything such as you suggest, the Government would have no difficulty in throttling it in five minutes."
"XI. Resolved - That this Congress deplores the circumstances which have led to the passing of Act VII of 1908 and Act XIV of 1908, but having regard to their drastic character and to the fact that a sudden emergency alone can afford any justification for such exceptional legislation, this Congress expresses its earnest hope that these enactments will only have a temporary existence in the Indian Statute Book." (emphasis added)
"The 30 crores of people inhabiting India must raise their 60 crores of hands to stop this course of oppression. Force must be stopped by force."
"And what is the number of English officials in each district? With a firm resolve you can bring British rule to an end in a single day.... If we sit idle, and hesitate to rise till the whole population are goaded to desperation, then we shall continue to sit idle till the end of time.... Without blood, O Patriots! will the country awake?" (Sumit Sarkar, Modern India, 1885-1947, Madras, 1983.)
"Neither rich nor able, a poor son like myself can offer nothing but his blood on the altar of his Mother's deliverance.... May I be re-born of the same Mother and may I re-die in the same sacred cause, till my mission is done and she stands free for the good of humanity and to the glory of God."
"emphatic and unqualified condemnation of the detestable outrages and deeds of violence which have been committed recently in some parts of the country and which are abhorrent to the loyal, humane and peace-loving nature of His Majesty's subjects". (emphasis added)
"No pundits or mullahs do we need No prayers or litanies need we recite These will only scuttle our boat Draw the sword; It is time to fight!"
"IV. Resolved - (a) that this Congress desires to convey to His Majesty the King Emperor and the people of England its profound devotion to the Throne, its unswerving allegiance to the British Connection, and its firm resolve to stand by the Empire, at all hazards and at all costs. (b) That this Congress places on record the deep sense of gratitude and the enthusiasm which the Royal Message, addressed to the Princes and Peoples of India at the beginning of the War, has evoked throughout the length and breadth of the country, and which strikingly illustrates His Majesty's solicitude and sympathy for them, and strengthens the bond which unites the Princes and Peoples of India to His Royal House and the person of His Gracious Majesty. "V. Resolved - that this Congress notes with gratitude and satisfaction the despatch of the Indian Expeditionary Force to the theatre of war, and begs to offer to H.E. the Viceroy its most heartfelt thanks for affording to the people of India an opportunity of showing that, as equal subjects of His Majesty, they are prepared to fight shoulder to shoulder with the people of other parts of the Empire in defence of right and justice, and the cause of the Empire."
"Now there is no doubt that at present the lower classes in India, both in the towns and in the rural areas, are going through a very hard time. The high prices resulting from the war have induced a feeling of restlessness making them discontented with conditions which previously they bore patiently. Accordingly in the country districts the peasants are grumbling that there is no reason why they should be forced to pay rent to the Zamindar or land revenue to the Sarkar, in the towns the labourers are complaining, that while the rich man lives of comfort and ease, they are condemned to toil, early and late, to live in miserable hovels, to go clad in rags. And unfortunately there is no sign that the economic stress which has brought this about will pass away in the near future. This growing atmosphere of social unrest opens the door to Bolshevik propaganda.... No man who has eyes to see the changed temper of the lower classes in India can deny [that] within a short time, unless remedies be applied, they will be ripe for Bolshevism." (Arindam Sen and Partha Ghosh, eds., Communist Movement in India: Historical Perspective and Important Documents, Patna, 1991)
"It will be easy now to see why I consider the Bills to be the unmistakable symptom of the deep-seated disease in the governing body. It needs, therefore, to be drastically treated. Subterranean violence will be the remedy by the impetuous, hot-headed youths, who will have grown impatient of the spirit underlying the bills and circumstances attending their introduction. The bills must intensify hatred and ill-will against the State, of which deeds of violence are undoubtedly an evidence. The Indian Covenanters (ie, those taking the Satyagraha vow) by their determination to undergo every form of suffering, make an irresistible appeal to the Government, towards which they bear no ill-will, and provide to the believers in efficiency of violence a means of seeking redress of grievance with the infallible remedy and with a remedy that blesses those who use it...."
"One noticeable feature of the general excitement was the unprecedented fraternisation between the Hindus and the Muslims. Their union, between the leaders, had now for long been a fixed plank of the nationalist platform. In this time of public excitement, even the lower classes agreed for once to forget the differences. Extraordinary scenes of fraternisation occurred. Hindus publicly accepted water from the hands of Moslems and vice-versa. Hindu-Moslem unity was the watchword of processions, indicated both by cries and by banners. Hindu leaders had actually been allowed to preach from the pulpit of a mosque."
"Addressing the meeting, I tried to bring home to the people the sense of their wrong, declared a penitential fast of three days for myself, appealed to the people to go on a similar fast for a day, and suggested to those who had been guilty of acts of violence to confess their guilt.... Just as I suggested to the people to confess their guilt, I suggested to the Government to condone the crimes. Neither accepted my suggestion."
"This Congress, while fully recognising the grave provocation that led to a sudden outburst of mob frenzy, deeply regrets and condemns the excesses committed in certain parts of the Punjab and Gujarat resulting in the loss of lives and injury to person and property during the month of April last."
"November 4 to December 2, 1919, woollen mills, Caunpore, 17,000 men out; December 7, 1919, to January 9, 1920, railway workers, Jamalpur, 16,000 men out; January 9-18, 1920, jute mills, Calcutta, 35,000 men out; January 2 to February 3, general strike, Bombay, 200,000 men out; January 20-31, mill workers, Rangoon, 20,000 men out; January 31, British India Navigation Company, Bombay, 10,000 men out; January 26 to February 16, mill workers, Sholapur, 16,000 men out; February 24 to March 29, Tata Iron and Steel workers, 40,000 men out; March 9, mill workers, Bombay, 60,000 men out; March 20-26, mill workers, Madras, 17,000 men out; May 1920, mill workers, Ahmedabad, 25,000 men out." (Quoted in Sumit Sarkar, Modern India: 1885-1947.)
"The object of the Indian National Congress is the attainment of Swarajya by the people of India by all legitimate and peaceful means."
"I do not for one moment suggest that we want to end the British connection at all costs unconditionally. If the British connection is for the advancement of India, we do not want to destroy it. But if it is inconsistent with our national self-respect, then it is our bounden duty to destroy it. Therefore, this creed is elastic enough to take in both shades of opinion...." (emphasis added)
"Mass civil disobedience was the thing that was luring the people. What was it, what would it be? Gandhi himself never defined it, never elaborated it, never visualised it even to himself. It must unfold itself to a discerning vision, to a pure heart, from step to step, much as the pathway in a dense forest would reveal itself to the wayfarer's feet as he wends his weary way until a ray of light brightens the hopes of an all but despairing wanderer."
"If the Congress would lead the revolution which is shaking India to the very foundation, let it not put its faith in the demonstration of temporary wild enthusiasm. Let it make the immediate demands of the trade-unions, as summarised by the Caunpur workers, its own demands; let it make the programme of kishan sabhas its own programme; and the time will come when it will not have to stop before any obstacle; it will not have to comment that Swarajya cannot be declared on a fixed date because people have not made enough sacrifice. It will be backed by the irresistible strength of the entire people consciously fighting for the material interest."
"During Christmas week, the Congress held its annual meeting at Ahmedabad. Gandhi had been deeply impressed by the rioting at Bombay, as statements made by him at the time had indicated, and the rioting had brought home to him the dangers of mass civil disobedience; and the resolutions of the Congress give evidence of this, since they not only rejected the proposals which the extreme wing of the Khilafat party had advanced for abandoning the policy of non-violence, but, whilst the organisation of civil disobedience when fulfilment of the Delhi conditions had taken place was urged in them, omitted any reference to the non-payment of taxes."
"Clause 1: The Working Committee deplores the inhuman conduct of the mob at Chauri Chaura in having brutally murdered constables and wantonly burned police thana. "Clause 2: In view of the violent outbreaks every time mass civil disobedience is inaugurated, indicating that the country is not non-violent enough, the Working Committee of the Congress resolves that mass civil disobedience... be suspended, and instructs the local Congress Committees to advise the cultivators to pay land revenue and other taxes due to the Government and to suspend every other activity of an offensive character. "Clause 3: The suspension of mass civil disobedience shall be continued until the atmosphere is so non-violent as to ensure the non-repetition of atrocities such as Gorakhpur, of the hooliganism such as at Bombay and Madras on the 17th of November and the 13th of January... "Clause 5: All volunteer processions and public meetings for the defiance of authority should be stopped. "Clause 6: The Congress Working Committee advises the Congress workers and organisations to inform the ryots (peasants) that withholding rent payment to the zamindars (landlords) is contrary to the Congress resolutions and injurious to the best interests of the country. "Clause 7: The Working Committee assures the zamindars that the Congress movement is in no way intended to attack their legal rights, and that even where the ryots have grievances, the Committee desires that redress be sought by mutual consultation and arbitration." (emphasis added)
"...Despite opposition we shall keep aloft the flag of revolution and even from the rungs of the scaffold we shall give forth the slogan- Inquilab Zindabad! "We do not enjoy killing an individual, but this individual was ruthless, mean, and part and parcel of an unjust system. It is necessary to destroy such a system. This man has been killed because he was a cog in the wheel of British rule. This government is the worst of all governments. "We are sorry to shed human blood, but bloodshed is necessary for a revolution. We aim at a revolution that will end exploitation of man by man. `LONG LIVE REVOLUTION' BALRAJ, (the alias for Chandrashekhar Azad), Commander-in-Chief, H.S.R.A."
"In the same manner we fail to comprehend the mentality of public leaders, who help to squander public time and money on so manifestly a stage-managed exhibition of India's helpless subjection. We have been ruminating on all this, as also on the whole-sale arrests of the leaders of the labour movement. The introduction of the Trade Disputes Bill brought us into the Assembly to watch its progress. The course of the debate only served to confirm our conviction that the toiling millions of India had nothing to expect from an institution that stood as a menacing monument to the strangling of the exploited and the serfdom of the helpless labourers. "Finally an insult, which we considered inhuman and barbarous, was hurled on the devoted heads of the representatives of the entire country and the starving and struggling millions were deprived of their primary rights and the sole means of economic welfare." (emphasis added)
"(When) Lord Irwin... described it as an act against no individual, but against the constitution itself, we readily recognised that the true significance of the incident had been correctly appreciated." (emphasis added)
"Force when aggressively applied is `violence' and is unjustifiable. But when it is used in the furtherance of a legitimate cause, it has its own moral justification. Elimination of force at all costs is utopian and the new movement which has arisen in the country, and of which we have given a warning, is inspired by the ideals which guided Guru Gobind Singh, Shivaji, Kamal Pasha, Reza Khan, Washington, Garibaldi, Lafayette, and Lenin. As both the Indian government and the Indian public leaders appeared to have shut their eyes and closed their ears against the existence and voice of this motive, we have felt it our duty to sound the warning, where it could not go unheard."
"...revolution does not necessarily mean sanguinary strife, nor is there any place in it for individual vendetta. It is not the cult of the bomb or the pistol. By `revolution' we mean that the present order of things, which is based on manifest injustice, must change. Producers or labourers, in spite of being the most necessary elements of society, are robbed by their exploiters of the fruits of their labour and are denied of their elementary rights.... On the other hand, capitalists, exploiters, parasites of society squander millions on mere whims.... Radical change is, therefore, necessary and it is the duty of those who realise this to reorganise society on a socialist basis. Unless this is done, and the exploitation of man by man and nation by nation, which goes masquerading as a civilising force, but in reality is imperialism, is brought to an end, the suffering and carnage with which humanity is threatened today cannot be prevented and all talk of ending wars and ushering an era of universal peace, is undisguised hypocrisy. By revolution we mean the ultimate establishment of an order of society, in which the sovereignty of the proletariat should be recognised and as a result of which the world federation should redeem humanity from the bondage of capitalism and the misery and the peril of wars. "...revolution is the inalienable right of all men. Freedom is the improscribable birthright of all. The toiler is the real sustainer of society. The sovereignty of the people is the ultimate destiny of workers. For these ideals and for this faith we shall welcome any suffering to which we shall be condemned. To this altar of revolution we bring our youth as incense, for no sacrifice is too great for so magnificent a cause. We are content to await the advent of the revolution. `LONG LIVE REVOLUTION.'"
"Our Party should have a military wing. Let me make myself clear. It is said that I am a terrorist, but in reality, I have been all along a revolutionary with definite ideals and ideology.... it is my considered opinion that bombs cannot serve our purpose. This is proved by the history of the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association. Throwing bombs is not only useless, but is often harmful as well. They are to be used on certain occasions only. Our chief aim should be to mobilise the toiling masses."
"It is no exaggeration to say that, at that time, Bhagat Singh's name was as widely known all over India and as popular as Gandhi's."
"...for a time, he bade fair to oust Mr. Gandhi as the foremost political figure of the day."