Mahatma Gandhi's Role in Indian Freedom Struggle

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Mahatma Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869 A.D. in a trading family of Porbandar, a small town in Kathiawar. His full name was Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, and his father was the Diwan of Rajkot. He went to South Africa after marriage and worked as a barrister there for twenty years. In South Africa, he had his first encounter with apartheid. Once while traveling on a train, he was thrown out of the first-class compartment despite having a ticket. This incident motivated him to fight against apartheid. Upon returning to India, he found his country under British rule, and his fellow citizens facing harsh treatment.

Role of Mahatma Gandhi in Freedom Struggle

Like other great men in history, Gandhi took time to develop his techniques to ensure his actions had an impact. His faith in different religions was commendable, as he listened to the teachings of Christianity and Hindu scriptures with equal belief. Gandhi arrived in India on January 9, 1915, and began his political engagement by addressing issues such as the Champaran indigo farmers, Ahmedabad textile workers, and Kheda peasants.

These struggles showcased Gandhi's method of agitation, known as Satyagraha, which he had developed in South Africa. In Champaran, he led the peasants' struggle against indigo planters, and in Kheda, he fought for relief for flood-affected farmers. Gandhi's non-cooperation movement and Salt Satyagraha furthered the Indian independence movement. The Quit India Movement in 1942 marked a significant push towards freedom, despite facing brutal opposition from the British.

Major Movements for Freedom India by Mahatma Gandhi

A. The Satyagraha Movement

One of his major achievements in 1918 were the Champaran and Kheda agitations – a movement against British landlords. The farmers and peasantry were forced to grow and cultivate Indigo, and were even forced to sell them at fixed prices. Finally, these farmers pledged to Mahatma Gandhi and non-violent protest took place, wherein Gandhiji won the battle.

B. Khilafat Movement

Gandhiji in 1919 approached Muslims, as he found the position of Congress quite weak and unstable. The Khilafat Movement was a worldwide protest against the status of Caliph by Muslims. This movement supported Muslims greatly and made Gandhiji a national leader.

C. Non-cooperation Movement

One of the first series of nonviolent protests nationwide was the non-cooperation movement started by Mahatma Gandhi. This movement aimed to make Indians aware that the British government could be opposed actively. Though the movement failed, it awakened Indians to resist British rule.

D. Salt Satyagraha Movement - Dandi march

Salt March, also known as Salt Satyagraha, began with the Dandi march in 1930. This movement was a crucial part of the Indian Independence movement and a form of non-violent resistance against salt tax. Gandhiji's principles of non-violence guided his actions throughout this movement.

Quit India Movement:

In August 1942, Gandhiji launched the Quit India Movement, demanding an immediate end to British rule. Despite facing severe repression from the British, the movement spread across India, inspiring people to dream of a free India.


Above, we studied Mahatma Gandhi's role in the Indian National Movement. His efforts against untouchability and promotion of cottage industries were significant achievements. He worked towards Hindu-Muslim unity and fought against communalism, securing the unity of the nationalist movement for independence.

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