Partition of Bengal and Swadeshi Movement

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Here are the notes/solutions/answers to the questions for history chapter 1 Partition of Bengal and Swadeshi Movement of class 10 (HSLC) for students studying under the Board of Secondary Education, Assam (SEBA). These notes/answers, however, should only be used for references and modification/changes can be made wherever possible.

INTRODUCTION: The partition of Bengal is one of the most important chapters in the freedom struggle of India. This partition, which occurred during the reign of Lord Curzon (1899-1905), is a historic event in the political history of India. The creation of two states by dividing the vast Bengal province stirred a national struggle against British rule in the whole of India. This event is known as the second important political upheaval in India after the Sepoy Mutiny in 1857.

In the last part of the 19th century and in the beginning of the 20th century the national movement became very strong in the Bengal province. This consciousness and uprising among the people put the British government in a dilemma and to suppress this national uprising, Lord Curzon created a new province flamed ‘Eastern Bengal and Assam’ by adjoining East Bengal. to Assam. On the other hand by keeping the remaining west parts of Bengal with Bihar and Orissa (Odisha) as before, another province. was continued as West Bengal. The whole country stood united on the protest to this partition. It created a new era in the uprising of national sentiment in every Indian. In reality the movement against the British policy of partition of Bengal was-the first active national struggle in all Indian perspectives.

Very short answer questions

1. In which Viceroy’s time did the partition of Bengal take place?

Answer: In the time of Viceroy Lord Curzon, the partition of Bengal took place.

2. On Which date in 1905 did the partition of Bengal come into force?

Answer: On 16 October 1905, the partition of Bengal come into force.

3. In which meeting was the proposal of giving up foreign commodities accepted?

Answer: In the second protest meeting held at Dinazpur on 20th July 1905, the proposal of giving up foreign commodities was accepted.

4. Who was the editor of the journal Jugaantar published in the time of Swadeshi movement?

Answer: Bhupendra Nath Dutta was the editor of the journal ‘Jugaantar’ or ‘Yugantar’ published in the time of Swadeshi movement.

5. When was the institution named the National Education Council (Jatiya Siksha Parisad) established in Bengal?

Answer: On 11th March 1906, the institution named the National Education Council (Jatiya Siksha Parisad) was established in Bengal.

6. Who was the main introducer of the industry named Bengal Chemicals?

Answer: Acharya Prafulla Ray was the main introducer of the industry named Bengal Chemicals.

7. Under whose presidentship did the Conference of Indian National Congress accept the proposal of swaraj for Indians?

Answer: Under the presidentship of Dada Bhai Naoraji the Conference of Indian National Congress accept the proposal of swaraj for Indians.

8. When did the unification of Bengal take place?

Answer: The unification of Bengal took place on 12 December 1911.

Short long answer type questions:

1. Mention three main geographical regions of Bengal which were annexed to the province West Bengal and Assam created after the partition of Bengal.

Answer: The three main geographical regions of Bengal which were annexed to the province West Bengal and Assam created after the partition of Bengal were Dhaka, Chattagram and Rajshahi.

2. Write briefly about what were the intentions of the partition of Bengal.

Answer: In Bengal, the unity between Hindu and Muslim farmers and labourers was a threat for the British and they planned to break the unity by division. So the hidden purpose behind the partition of Bengal was to decimate the Hindu Muslim unity. To meet this vested interest, communal feelings were needed to be spread.

3. Why was the anti-partition of the Bengal movement named as Swadeshi movement? Discuss briefly.

Answer: The anti-partition of the Bengal movement was named as Swadeshi movement because it was publicly recommended that the Indians would unitedly boycott foreign goods and would start using homemade goods made by the Indians. Irrespective of caste, creed and religion people plunged into this movement.

4. Discuss the contributions of the Swadeshi movement towards national education.

Answer: The Swadeshi movement had a big influence on the prevalent educational system of Bengal. Satish Ch. Mukherjee; started a national institution named ‘Dawn Society’, with full co-operation from Rabindra Nath Tagore and Charu Das Banerjee. This society did against the Curzou’s University law (1904) and Carlyle’s circular (1905) and started the movement for uprising national education. The number of students leaving government schools increased and consequently many national schools were established at many places of Bengal. During the Swadeshi movement, altogether 62 secondary schools and 3000 national primary schools were established.

5. How did the national industries develop during the Swadeshi movement? Explain in short.

Answer: On the background of the swadeshi movement, the mentality for self-development grew in Bengal and it brought a positive and congenial atmosphere for the establishment of national industries. As the demand for locally made goods grew higher, several big industries and various small scale industries came into being. As a consequence of boycotting foreign goods and productions of local industries, the number of imported-goods came to be very low in India. Due to the political movement in Bengal, the foundation of modern industries was laid in various provinces of India. In short, the Swadeshi movement opened a new chapter in the progress of Indian industries and businesses.

6. What were the anti-movement measures taken by the British to dominate the Swadeshi movement?

Answer: The British Government expected support from moderate group leaders of Congress on ‘the issue of partition of Bengal. In order to keep these leaders loyal, Lord Curzon offered them various titles, posts, medals, etc. The moderate Congress members were offered the post, of judges in the high court, member of the British parliament, member in Viceroy’s Council, etc. for obtaining support towards partition.

7. Mention three results of Swadeshi movement.

Answer: Three results of Swadeshi movement were:

i. The Swadeshi movement had a big influence on the prevalent educational system of Bengal. The number of students leaving government schools increased and consequently many national schools were established at many places of Bengal.
ii. On the background of the swadeshi movement, the mentality for self-development grew in Bengal and it brought a positive and congenial atmosphere for the establishment of national industries. In short, the Swadeshi movement opened a new chapter in the progress of Indian industries and businesses.
iii. Keeping equal pace with the man, the middle-class urban-women also took active part in the swadeshi movement by crossing all the social barriers. This participation against the partition of Bengal led the Indian freedom struggle to a well-organized level.

8. Mention three contributions of the Swadeshi movement.

Answer: The three contributions of the Swadeshi movement were:

i. The Swadeshi movement was able to give the Indians a political knowledge regarding mass movement. Indian people learned that if the majority of the people come forward for a common cause, then a mass movement would certainly become successful.
ii. The sense of nationalism stirred by the Swadeshi movement compelled the Indian National Congress for the first time to take the proposal for demanding Swaraj in its Calcutta session in 1906 under the presidentship of Dada Bhai Naoraji.
iii. The Swadeshi movement also gave birth to armed movement. The tendency to resort to violent methods occurred in some sections of activists.

Write short notes on:

1. Kabiguru Rabindranath Tagore

Answer: Kabiguru Rabindranath Tagore was a great Indian writer and freedom fighter who through his writings, speeches, ideas, and active involvement shaped the Swadeshi movement. On the day of implementation of the partition of Bengal i.e. 16th October 1905, at the call of Rabindranath Tagore, the Bengali people of Calcutta observed Rakhibandhan. Under his leadership, thousands of people gathered at Maszids at Kalutola and Chitpur and tied rakhis to the Moulabi’s and other Muslims. On the background of the swadeshi movement, The Swadeshi Bhandar, established by Rabindranath Tagore became a reputed textile firm. He also had received Nobel Prize for literature in 1913.

2. Margaret Elizabeth Noble (Bhagini Nivedita)

Answer: Bhagini Nivedita, born in 1864, was a prominent woman who contributed a lot in creating national awareness among the youths. Ireland born Margaret Elizabeth Noble during her stay in Calcutta she was actively associated with Youngman’s Hindu Union, Vivekananda Society, Dawn Society, and Anusilan Saminltee and encouraged the youth’s and the womenfolk to be independent by involvement in indigenous industries. She died in the year 1911.

3. Nawab Salimullah

Answer: Nawab Salimullah led the creation of the Muslim League and later declared the aims and objectives of the All India Muslim League. This league soon became a big force to weaken the Indian National Congress. He was instrumental in the propaganda propagation among the Muslims against the Hindus initiated by Lord Curzon. With the help of Nawab Sallimullah Khan Lord Curzon tried to approach the Muslim of Bengal. For this purpose he lent Rs. 14 Lacs to Nawab with minimum interest. Nawab Salimullah died in the year 1905.

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