Word Meaning, Summary, Important Questions Of Chapter 5 Indigo | Class 12

Chapter 4 A Thing of Beauty

Hindi Meaning Of Difficult Words | Chapter 5 Indigo

S.No.WordMeaningsMeanings (in hindi)Synonyms
1Conventionagreementसमझौताcompromise, deal, settlement
2DelegatesRepresentativesप्रतिनिधियोंenvoy, spokesperson
3Peasant small farmerकिसान husbandman, agriculturalist, swain
4Emaciatedthinदुर्बलlean, weak, svelte
5Champaran A place in Biharचंपारण………….
6Resolutedeterminedदृढ़firm, steadfast, tenacious
7Committeddedicatedप्रतिबद्धdevoted, Faithful, pledged.
9Haunches thighsहांचeam, support, stay
10Boardedget on, enterचढ़नाascend, climb
11Pesteredbother, harassकष्ट देनाpall, incommode, harm
12Permitted allowedअनुमति है acceptable, approved, authorised
13Impartingpass on, givingप्रदानgrant, pass, put
14Extraordinary exceptional, remarkableअसाधारणextravagant, rare, special
15Harbour here, entertainविचार करनाconsider, ponder, think
16Sympathysupport, pityसहानुभूतिempathy, compassion, feeling
17Advocatesupporter, protectorसमर्थकproponent, champion, adherent
18Adventarrivalआगमनbeginning, commencement, start
19Conveyancetransportationवाहनvehicle, carriage
20Chided criticize, scoldडांटनाchastise
21Conclusion result, end of somethingनिष्कर्ष inference, gist, chief point
22Fear strickenafraidभयाकुलterrified, horrified
23Arableland suitable for farmingकृषि योग्यtillable
24Tenants occupants paying rent in cash or kindकिरायेदारोंoccupant, resident
25Estate propertyजायदादground, land
26Compelledforcedमजबूरconstrained, helpless, obliged
27Surrendered to give inआत्मसमर्पण कर दियाabandon, relinquish
28Contractagreementअनुबंधannexure, bond, appendage
29Indigoplant that produces a blue colorनीलshiners, blueing, bruise
30Learned come to knowसीखाgrasp, master
31Synthetic Chemical based, artificialकृत्रिमmock, false, labored
32Compensationpaymentsमुआवजाquid proquo, smart money
33Arrangement Processव्यवस्थाsystem, order, dispensation
34Irksome irritatingकष्टप्रदbothersome, tedious.
35Resisted opposed, to be against somethingविरोध gainsay, interfere, protest
36Thugscheatsठगgangster, terrorist
37Illiterateuneducatedअनपढ़analphabetic, anpadh, non-literate
38Proceededbegin a course of actionबढ़ती करनाsteepen, enlarge, deepen
39Bully trying to harm others considering them to be weakतंग करनाpinch
40Forthwithimmediately, at onceतुरंतinstantly, directly
41Accompanied go along with someoneसाथgo along with
42Multitude a large number of peopleभीड़horde, Legion, myriad.
43Investigations inquiriesजांचexamination, inspection
44Maltreatedill treatदुर्व्यवहार करनाmisbehave, ill-use
45Superintendent Manager, supervisorप्रबंधकsteward, warden, director
46Overtookwent ahead of himआगे निकल जानाpass, outstrip
47Complied followed or obeyedअनुपालनobserve, obey
48Consequence resultपरिणामoutcome, effect, sequel
49Influential powerfulप्रभावशाली powerful, efficacious, imposing
50WiredTelegraphedतार देनाcable, line, coil
51Merelyonlyकेवलjust, simply, exclusively
52Authoritiesofficials, powerप्राधिकारीcommand, control
53Spontaneousvoluntary, unforcedस्वाभाविकnatural, Flowing, Inartificial
54Demonstrationsprotestप्रदर्शनोंpresentation, proof
55Courthousecourt buildingअदालत…………..
56Liberationreleaseमुक्तिdischarge, emancipation, deliverance
57Concretesolidठोसsolid, real
58HithertoEarlier, Previouslyअब तकbefore
59Dreaded regarded with great fear or apprehensionखूंखारfear, terror
60Unquestionednot examined or inquired intoनिर्विवादundeniable, indisputable, watertight
61Baffledconfusedविस्मित करpuzzle
62Self Relianceself sufficiency, self supportआत्मनिर्भरताautarky, self-help
63Postpone delayस्थगित करनाstave off, adjourn, protract
64Apparentlyseemingly, evidentlyजाहिरा तौर परobviously, clearly
65Guiltyat faultदोषीblameable, at fault
66Conflict to be against someoneटकरावdispute, quarrel
67HumanitarianConcerned with human welfareमानवीयhumane, generous
68Consciencesense of right and wrongअंतःकरणmoral sense, inner voice
69Magistratecivil officer who administers lawमजिस्ट्रेटbailiff, judge
70Pronouncedeclare or announceनिर्णय सुनानाjudge, proclaim
71recess breakअवकाशleisure, vacation, leave
72Reconvenedto start again after a small breakफिर इकट्ठा हुआreconcile, rejoin.
73Libertyfreeस्वतंत्रताindependence, freedom
74Vehemently in an intense mannerआवेगपूर्णaffectional, gusty
75Conferredgrantedप्रदत्तpaid, conferred, delivered
76Injusticeunfairnessअन्यायinequity, vicissitude
77Withdrew leftहट जानाremove, extract, takeaway
78Upshotresult, conclusionपरिणामconsequence, end result
79Consultations discussionविचार-विमर्शadvice, counsel, conference
80Desertion action of leaving a place, organization etcपरित्याग repudiation, evacuation, resignation
81LieutenantGovernor: deputy governorलेफ्टिनेंटdeputy, assistant
82Province region, territoryभूमिखंडground, area, sector
83Civil Disobediencepeaceful form of political protestसविनय अवज्ञाpassive resistance, satyagraha
84Triumphedwon विजयsucceed, gain a victory
86Depositionsa formal written statementबयानdeposit
87Evidenceproofसबूतwitness, confirmation, indorsement
88PacifistPeace makerशांतिवादीpeacemonger
89Investigators the inspectorsजांचकर्ताexaminer, inquirer, analyst
90Vehement showing strong feeling; forceful,passionate, or intense.जोशीलाrapturous, spirited, unctuous
91Leadingprominent, popularप्रमुखmain, chief
92Associatessupportersसहयोगीpartner, colleague, co-worker
93Protractedlasting for a long time or longer than expected or usual.फैला हुआoutspread, scattered, expanded
94Abstractionssomething which exists only as an ideaकपोल-कल्पनाidea, image
95Initial at the startप्रारंभिकpreparatory, opening, rudimentary
96Uninterruptedcontinuousनिरंतरcontinuous, sustained, continued
97Entreatyan earnest or humble requestविनतीentreaty, prayer, suit
98Assembledgatheredइकट्ठेget together, collect
99Deceitfullydishonestlyछल सेdeceptively, deviously, falsely.
100Extortedtook forciblyजबरन वसूलीobtain by force
101Adamant firmअटलetermined, rigid
102Amazementsurpriseविस्मयdaze, wonder
103Obligedrequired, made legally bound to do somethingआभारीgrateful
104Deadlocka situation in which no progress can be madeगतिरोधimpasse, stalemate, stand-off
105Unanimously without oppositionसर्वसम्मति सेas one
106Prestigehonour, esteemप्रतिष्ठा status, dignity, respectability
107Defendersprotectorरक्षकkeeper, savior, life saver
108Justifiedmarked by a good or legitimate reasonउचितappropriate, justified, admittable
109Intertwined knittedगुंथा twisted, braided,
110Alleviateupliftकम करनाreduce, detract, lower
111Reverted returnedवापस लाया गयाgo back
112Contentedwilling to accept something, satisfiedसंतुष्टcontented, acquiescent
113Residentslocalsनिवासीhouseowner, citizen
114Volunteera person who offers his service free of costस्वयंसेवकparticipant, client

About The Poet | Louis Fischer | Chapter 5 Indigo

Louis Fischer (1896-1970) was a Jewish – American journalist. This chapter ‘Indigo’ is an excerpt from his book ‘Life of Mahatma Gandhi’ which was the basis of academy award winning film ‘Gandhi. This story described Gandhi’s struggle for the poor peasants of Champaran.

Short Summary Of Chapter 5 Indigo In English

The incident occurred in 1917 when Gandhiji attended the Annual Convention of Indian Congress in 1916. Approximately more than 2300 delegates and many visitors were present. A poor skinny peasant Raj Kumar Shukla approached Gandhiji. He requested Gandhiji to accompany him to Champaran to solve the issues and misery of the poor peasants living there. Raj Kumar Shukla was one of the sharecroppers of Champaran, who had come to appeal against the injustice of the landlord system in Bihar. The peasant accompanied Gandhi everywhere he went and unrelentingly begged him to visit Champaran. In due course, his determination impressed Gandhi and so he asked the peasant to meet him in Calcutta.

At the decided time both of them boarded the train to Patna. They first went to Rajendra Prasad’s house, who was a lawyer and later became the first President of India. The servants allowed them to stay as Rajendra Prasad was not there. However, the servants did not allow them to take out water from the well as they thought Gandhiji and Raj Kumar were untouchables.

Gandhiji stopped at Muzzafarpur to gather more information on the sharecroppers of Champaran. When Gandhiji and Raj Kumar Shukla arrived at the station, they were received by Professor J.B. Kriplani and his students. Gandhiji stayed at Professor Malkani, a school teacher’s house. was a daring act by Professor Malkani as advocates of home rule were considered unsafe for Indians. When Gandhiji reached Muzzafarpur all the sharecroppers gathered in to meet him. The lawyer briefed him about the conditions. Gandhiji chided the lawyers when he came to know they charged high fees from the poor farmers. Gandhiji decided to change the way things were done. His new plan of action was to stop going to the law courts as the fear-stricken farmers did not get much help from there. The sharecroppers needed to be fearless. Champaran district was divided into large estates owned by Englishmen. The farmers were forced to grow indigo on 15% of the land. Moreover, they had no claim on the indigo harvest as the entire indigo had to be given as rent. Meanwhile, because of the German synthetic indigo, the value of the natural indigo had gone down. The landlord exempted the tenants from the 15% agreement only after a paid compensation. The peasants realized that what they were being asked to do was unjust. However, many of them willingly signed. The ones who tried to resist, engaged lawyers. When the farmers came to know the real reason behind the exemption. The ones who had signed, wanted their money back.

On his arrival, Gandhiji visited the secretary of British Landlord’s Association. But no information was provided to him. So, he went to the British official commissioner of Tirhut division where he was bullied and asked to leave. Gandhiji was determined to help the peasants. He gathered few lawyers and went to Motihari, the capital of Champaran. He carried on further with his investigations.

Once, while investigating a case of a peasant Gandhiji got the message to return. He was issued a notice. Gandhiji wrote back that he would disobey the order issued and would not go from Champaran. As a result, he was asked to appear before the court the next day.

Gandhiji immediately wired Rajendra Prasad to reach Bihar with his influential friends and also wired ashram and sent a detailed report to the Viceroy. Next day, thousands of peasants gathered outside the court. The sharecroppers took the first initiative to be fearless. The court requested Gandhiji to control the crowd and sought to postpone the hearing to which Gandhiji objected. Gandhiji protested against the delay. He read out a statement that he disobeyed not to break law but to render humanitarian and national service. He also claimed to have no disrespect for law but greater respect for law of conscience.

Gandhiji was asked to furnish bail in two hours to which he refused. So, the court had to release him without bail. The court reconvened and withheld the judgement for several days and Gandhiji was allowed to stay free. Prominent lawyers discussed with Gandhiji what they would do if he was sentenced for prison.

Eventually on Gandhiji’s arrest the lawyers went to their native place. Gandhiji questioned them that what would happen to the sharecroppers if they all would return. After contemplating they decided if Gandhiji, as a stranger, can go to the court they should also get court arrested as they were the residents of the nearby districts and knew the case so well. This initiated the winning of battle of Champaran. Several days later Gandhiji learnt that the case against him was to be dropped.

Civil disobedience won for the first time in modern India. Gandhiji and the lawyers prepared cases for about ten thousand peasants and collected relevant documents. The next few days saw a lot of activity where the landlords at Champaran protested violently.

Meanwhile, Gandhiji was summoned by Lt. Governor, Sir Edward Gait. Gandhiji met his associate and chalked out a detailed plan on civil disobedience, in case he got arrested. Lt. Governor appointed commission of inquiry after four interviews with Gandhiji. The inquiry commission consisted of landlords, government officials and Gandhiji, who was the representative of peasants. Numerous evidences were collected against the landlords. Since they were left with no choice, the landlords agreed to make the refund. Gandhiji was asked to quote the amount. Gandhiji demanded only 50% in contrary to the landlords expectations. Landlords’ proposal of 25% was approved by Gandhiji. Gandhiji later justified his stand. He told the peasants that more than the refund amount what mattered most was the surrender of prestige by the landlords. The victory infused courage in the peasants. Later, British landlords abandoned the estates. This proved Gandhiji’s explanation. Land was reverted to the peasants.

Gandhiji wanted to eradicate social and cultural backwardness in the village of Champaran. He sought volunteers for this work. Devas Gandhiji’s youngest son, Kasturba-Gandhiji’s wife, taught the ashram rules on personal cleanliness, community sanitation and general hygiene since the health conditions were really poor. Castor oil, quinine and sulfur ointment were used for curing ailments. Schools were opened in six different villages and several of his disciples and family members volunteered as teachers. Even though living away from it, Gandhiji made regular enquiries about the ashram, sending instructions and asking for financial accounts.

Although what he did would have been an ordinary case but the episode was a decisive movement of his life. The politics was intricately linked with his day to day life. He wanted Indians to stand on their feet fearlessly. He also wanted people to become self-reliant, one must not depend on others to win over battles. Patience, perseverance and constant efforts are sure to pay off one day.

Important Previous Year Questions From Chapter 5 Indigo

SAI (2 marks)

  1. Why did Gandhiji feel that taking the Champaran case to the court was useless? (Delhi 2014)
  2. How did the Champaran peasants react when they heard that a Mahatma had come to help them? (AI 2014 C)
  3. What made the Lieutenant Governor drop the case against Gandhiji? (AI 2014 C)
  4. How were Shukla and Gandhiji received in Rajendra Prasad’s house? (Delhi 2012)

SA II (3 marks)

  1. Why do you think Gandhiji considered the Champaran episode to be a turning point in his life? (Delhi 2019)
  2. Though the sharecroppers of Champaran received only one-fourth of the compensation, how can the Champaran struggle still be termed a huge success and victory? (2018)
  3. Why was Gandhiji opposed to C.F. Andrews helping him in Champaran? (Delhi 2016)
  4. Why did Gandhiji agree to a settlement of mere 25 percent? (Delhi 2016)
  5. At Champaran what did the British landlords want from the sharecroppers? (Foreign 2016)
  6. After initial reluctance why did the lawyers tell Gandhiji that they were ready to follow him into jail? (Foreign 2016)
  7. How did Rajkumar Shukla establish that he was resolute? (AI 2015)
  8. How was Gandhi treated at Rajendra Prasad’s house? (AI 2015)
  9. What were the terms of the indigo contract between the British landlords and the Indian peasants? (AI 2015)
  10. How did Gandhi show that he cared for the cultural and social backwardness of Champaran villagers? (Foreign 2015)
  11. How is Gandhi critical of the lawyers ? (Foreign 2015)
  12. Why did Gandhi tell the court that he was involved in a ‘conflict of duties’?(Foreign 2015)
  13. Why is Raj Kumar Shukla Described as being ‘resolute’? (Delhi 2015 C)

LA I (5 marks)

  1. Why is Champaran episode considered to be the beginning of the Indian struggle for Independence?

(AI 2014)

  1. Gandhiji’s was not a loyalty to abstractions; it was a loyalty to living human beings. Why did Gandhiji continue his stay in Champaran even after indigo sharecropping disappeared? (AI 2014)
  2. Describe how according to Louis Fischer, Gandhiji succeeded in his Champaran campaign. (Delhi 2014 C)
  3. Exploitation is a universal phenomenon. The poor indigo farmers were exploited by the British landlords to which Gandhiji objected. Even after our independence we find exploitation of unorganized labor. What values do we learn from Gandhiji’s campaign to counter the present day problems of exploitation? (Delhi 2013)

LA II (6 marks)

  1. How did Civil Disobedience triumph at Motihari? (2020)
  2. How did Gandhiji use Satyagraha and non violence at Champaran to achieve his goal? (2020)
  3. When and why did the author say that civil disobedience had triumphed for the first time in modern India? (AI 2019)
  4. What did Gandhiji do to remove the cultural and social backwardness in the Champaran villages? (Delhi 2015 C)
  5. How did a visit to Champaran become a turning point in Gandhiji’s life? How does this show Gandhi’s love and concern for the common people of India? (AI 2015 C)

LA IV (10 marks)

  1. Why did Gandhiji agree to a settlement of 25 per cent refund to the farmers? How did it influence the peasant-landlord relationship in Champaran? (AI 2013)
  2. Give an account of Gandhiji’s efforts to secure justice for the poor indigo sharecroppers of Champaran. (AI 2012)
  3. Why did Raj Kumar Shukla invite Gandhiji to Champaran? How did Gandhiji solve the problem of the indigo farmers? (AI 2012)
  4. Why do you think Gandhiji considered the Champaran episode to be a turning-point in his life? (AI 2011)

Download Free pdf Previous Year Paper For NCERT English Class 12

Answer Of Chapter 5 Indigo For The Above Questions

  1. Gandhiji felt that taking the Champaran case to the court was useless because according to him, peasants were quite crushed and fear stricken. Gandhiji felt that there was little hope of getting justice as the case was against the British landlords. Moreover, the lawyers were collecting big fees from the poor peasants. He knew that the actual relief for the peasants would come when they become free from fear.
  2. When the peasants of Champaran heard that Mahatma had come to help them they came out a in large numbers and demonstrated around court house demanding their leader to be set free.
  3. The Lt. Governor dropped the case against Gandhiji because he was fighting a just cause because of which he had the support of the peasants and the local people. The authorities felt powerless. Mr. Fischer writes, “Civil disobedience had triumphed, the first time in modern India.”
  4. Raj Kumar Shukla and Gandhiji were not well received at Rajendra Prasad’s home. He was out of town. The servants knew Shukla as the peasant who pestered their master. Since Gandhiji accompanied Shukla, the servants took him to be a peasant as well. They allowed him to be on the grounds, but he was not allowed to draw water from the well as servants were unsure about Gandhiji’s caste. They did not want drops from his bucket to pollute the water in the well.
  5. Gandhiji considered the Champaran episode to be a turning point in his life perhaps because he declared that the British could not order him in his own country. It was for the first time that Gandhiji introduced a non-violent resistance, which came to be known as Satyagraha, against the Britishers.
  6. For Gandhiji the amount of the refund was less important than the fact that the landlords had been forced to return part of the money and with it, part of their prestige too. It was also a lesson in self-reliance for Indians. They learnt that they too had rights and that Britishers were not above the law. Hence, the Champaran struggle can still be termed a huge success and victory.
  7. Gandhiji opposed to C.F. Andrews helping him in Champaran because the Indians were fighting an unequal fight. Therefore, support of an Englishman would show weakness of heart of the Indians. Gandhiji even wanted Indians to rely on themselves and to be free of fear.
  8. For Gandhiji the amount of the refund was less important than the fact that the landlords had been forced to return part of the money and with it, part of their prestige too. It was also a lesson in self-reliance for Indians. They learnt that they too had rights and that Britishers were not above the law. Hence, he agreed to settlement of 25 percent refund to the farmers.
  9. At Champaran, the British landlords initially insisted that the Indian farmers plant 15% indigo and surrender entire crop as rent. However, when the Britishers learnt that Germany had developed synthetic indigo and that it could affect the demand and price of naturally grown indigo, they asked farmers to pay compensation for release from 15% agreement.
  10. Gandhiji, who was an outsider, had come to Champaran to help the peasants in their fight against injustice. He was also willing to go to jail for them. The lawyers, who were locals, who had taken fees from the poor peasants, realized that deserting fellow Indians, especially Gandhiji and his cause, at this point would be shameful. This is why, after initial reluctance, the lawyers told Gandhiji that they were ready to follow him into jail.
  11. Raj Kumar Shukla came from Champaran to Lucknow to speak to Gandhiji. He accompanied Gandhiji everywhere even to Cawnpore and his Ahmedabad ashram. Gandhiji asked Raj Kumar Shukla to come and meet him on a fixed day in Calcutta. But, the appointment day was several months later. When Gandhiji arrived in Calcutta, Raj Kumar Shukla was waiting for him on the appointed day at the appointed spot.
  12. Refer to answer 4.
  13. Refer to answer 9.
  14. Gandhiji genuinely cared for the cultural and social backwardness of Champaran villagers. Therefore, Gandhiji opened primary schools in six villages and called for teachers to teach the children. Kasturba and their son joined. He also called doctors to look into health condition and taught the villages about hygiene and personal cleanliness.
  15. Refer to answer 10.
  16. Since Gandhiji was a law abiding citizen, he did not want to go against the court’s orders. Gandhiji did not want to set a bad example as a law breaker on one hand and on the other wanted to render humanitarian and national service to the people. For this reason, Gandhiji told the court that he was involved in a conflict of duties.
  17. Raj Kumar Shukla is described as being ‘resolute’ because, in order to convince Gandhiji to come to Champaran, Raj Kumar Shukla accompanied him everywhere. He did not leave Gandhiji’s side for weeks, begging him to come to Champaran. He even followed Gandhiji to his ashram in Ahmedabad. Impressed by his perseverance, Gandhiji asked Raj Kumar Shukla to meet him in Calcutta on a particular date and take him from there. On the appointed date, Gandhiji found him at the appointed spot waiting for him.
  18. The Champaran episode is considered to be the beginning of the Indian struggle for Independence because it was for the first time that Gandhiji introduced a non-violent resistance, which came to be known as Satyagraha. It was a long drawn out but patient and peaceful agitation against the British. During this struggle, Gandhiji decided to urge the departure of the Britishers for the first time. Therefore, it was also a turning point in Gandhiji’s life. The struggle did not begin as an act of defiance, but it grew out of an attempt to make the sufferings of the poor peasants less severe. The farmers learnt courage to face their was the fears. They learnt for the first time that they too had rights and that self-alliance is the key to fight any battle. The Champaran episode beginning of their liberation from the fear of the Britishers and its success, a triumph of the first civil disobedience movement.
  19. Unsatisfied with mere political and economic solutions, Gandhiji wanted to bring about a change in the social and cultural conditions of Champaran, He wanted to make the peasants self-reliant. He noticed the unhealthy living conditions and poor sanitation in the village. He also reliance the need for literacy. Hence, he decided to continue his stay in Champaran even after the disappearance of indigo sharecropping. He opened up schools in six different villages, and several of his disciples and family members volunteered as teachers. His wife, Kasturba, worked on the personal cleanliness and community sanitation of the place. Gandhiji also hired a doctor for the improvement of the health conditions.
  20. This proves that Gandhiji’s was not a loyalty to abstractions; it was a loyalty to living human beings. This also made him keen to eradicate social and cultural backwardness of Champaran.
  21. Gandhiji’s campaign to provide justice to the sharecroppers of Champaran was not an act of defiance. Therefore, the methods he used to win this battle were also non-violent. In order to help the peasants, Gandhiji was even willing to get arrested. He was asked to leave Champaran. However, he refused. He met various high ranking government officials, who could not help but agree with his rational arguments. Seeing the efforts put by Gandhiji to alleviate the distress of the poor peasants even though he was a non-resident of Champaran, he received full support of the common man, his followers and other leaders. His powerful words instilled moral courage in every Indian; he asked fellow Indians to have courage, be self-reliant and united. This is how, Gandhiji eventually succeeded in his Champaran campaign.
  22. Exploitation continues in unorganized sectors, such as farm workers, construction site laborers, house maids or helpers at ‘has’ who are paid too little for the quantum of work done. Gandhiji showed us the way to counter the present day problems of exploitation. He helped Champaran sharecroppers by infusing courage and freedom from fears. He taught them to be confident and self reliant which in turn enhanced their self esteem.
  23. By fighting against injustice by non-violent ways, Gandhiji proved that if the cause is just, then one must not fear anything, only rely on oneself. After Gandhiji made the British landlords refund the sharecroppers money, the Indians realized the Englishmen, who acted as their lords were not indispensable. Therefore, when the peasants came together to demonstrate outside the courthouse the British officials found themselves powerless.
  24. In a violence-ridden world, he taught the sharecroppers to move towards their goal in a united and tolerant manner. As a result they won their fight against injustice and became self-reliant. These values helped them improve their quality of life and bring relief to present day problems of exploitation.
  25. When Gandhi visited Champaran to look into the grievances of the peasants, he was served with an official notice to quit Champaran immediately. Gandhi returned the notice with the remark that he would disobey the order. This was the beginning of civil disobedience.
  26. As a result, Gandhi was ordered to appear in the court next day. Thousands of peasants put up a demonstration at the courthouse in Motihari. The crowd, in support for Gandhi was beyond the officials’ control and the officials appealed to Gandhi to help them manage the crowd, which he did so. In the trial, the magistrate demanded Gandhi to furnish bail, but Gandhi did not comply with the orders and later on he was released without bail. After several days, the case against Gandhi was dropped by the Lieutenant-Governor implying his defeat against the fervor of the masses backing Gandhi. This was how civil disobedience triumphed in Motihari.
  27. Satyagraha was actually a mass civil disobedience movement. Gandhiji set up an ashram in Champaran to protest against the British government for forcing farmers to cultivate cash crops in place of food crops and payment of low wages to the growers. His form of agitation included cleaning up the villages, building hospitals and schools and demolishing evil social practices like untouchability and purdah system. This non-violent protest won him the support and admiration of the masses, non-violent protest gained huge momentum. Subsequently Gandhiji was asked to leave Champaran by an official order. Thousands of people held a demonstration protesting his arrest in front of the police station and the court. The officials were helpless against the fervor of the crowd and Gandhiji was released without bail. So civil-disobedience had triumphed for the first time in modern India. The Champaran movement brought to heel the British rulers and the poor farmers were subsequently paid remunerative wages and their farming rights to grow crops of their choice was restored.
  28. Gandhiji visited Champaran to look into the problems of the poor peasants. There, he was greeted by thousands of peasants. This was the beginning of the peasant liberation from fear of the British. A peasant had been maltreated in a village called Motihari. Gandhiji set out to see him. The police superintendent’s messenger overtook him and ordered him to return. Gandhiji complied. At home, he was served an official notice to leave Champaran. Gandhiji signed the receipt and wrote on it that he would disobey the order. This was the beginning of Civil disobedience.
  29. Gandhiji again received a summon to appear in court the next day. The peasants thronged the courtroom. They wanted to help the ‘ Mahatma’ who was in trouble with the authorities for trying to help them. The officials were powerless. Gandhiji helped them regulate the crowd. This shocked the officials.
  30. The magistrate postponed announcing the sentence by two hours and asked Gandhiji to furnish bail. Gandhiji declined. The judge released him without bail. The judge said he would not deliver the judgment for several days. Later, the case was dropped by the Lt. Governor himself. This way the Civil disobedience had triumphed.
  31. The purpose of Gandhiji’s visit to Champaran was to bring justice to the sharecroppers. During their struggle, Gandhiji made the poor, illiterate peasants realize that they too had rights. He wanted them to become self-reliant and fight for their rights. Gandhiji’s aim was to mold the Indians in such a way that they could stand on their own feet and make India free. He felt that this was possible only if the cultural and social backwardness in the Champaran villages is removed. Therefore, after achieving victory for the Champaran sharecroppers, Gandhiji stayed on to alleviate their sufferings. He started schools in six different villages and clinics. His disciples, wife and sons and many others volunteered to help him. Mrs. Gandhi taught the ashram rules on personal cleanliness and community sanitation. Health conditions were bad. So, Gandhiji and his volunteer doctor took care of that as well by providing the available medical aids.
  32. Gandhiji’s fight against the injustice of the landlord system in Bihar made people realize the power of civil disobedience. They became self reliant and gained courage to stand up against injustice. With Gandhiji’s help and local support, the peasants received 25% compensation out of the full amount. This was a turning point for them, Gandhiji and all those who were involved in the struggle. It was the first time in India that natives won against the British. Gandhiji was not a local yet he fought for the rights of the poor peasants of Champaran. Post victory, he even had his wife, sons and medical representatives work for the welfare of the farmers. This shows Gandhiji’s love and concern for the common people of India.
  33. Gandhiji received reports from Raj Kumar Shukla about the Indian farmers being exploited by British landlords. The farmers were forced to grow indigo on 15% of the land that harvest was treated as rent by the landlords.
  34. When the news of German synthetic indigo reached the landlords, they agreed to release the sharecroppers but the latter were asked to pay compensation to the landlords for their 15% for their land. Raj Kumar Shukla was one of the few peasants who wanted to complain about the injustice of the landlord system in Bihar.
  35. Gandhiji went to Champaran to look into the matter himself. He began at Muzzafarpur by studying the problems and getting the facts. He met the other peasants and consulted the lawyers who briefed him about the situation Gandhiji chided them for collecting fees from the poor sharecroppers. He said that going to the law court was useless; peasants needed to be free from fear. He visited the secretary of British Landlord’s Association and also met the British Official Commissioner of Tirhut Division. However, the meetings were not fruitful. He along with few lawyers went to Motithari to continue investigation. He was on his way to meet a peasant, when the police superintendent’s messenger asked him to return to the town. On returning he served Gandhiji with a notice to leave Champaran. He disobeyed the court order to leave Champaran. As a result, he was summoned to appear in the court; he was prepared to go to prison for the sake of peasants. Hearing that an outsider had come to help them, who was now in tiff with authorities, thousands of peasants came to Motihari and demonstrated outside the court house. Seeing so much unrest the British officials felt the fear of being challenged by the Indians. Gandhiji inspired the peasants, with his talks and actions, to overcome their fear and be self reliant. Gandhiji ensured the triumph of civil disobedience. He agreed to a 25% refund to make the poor farmers realize that because of their united efforts, the British landlords had no other option than to lose their money as well as their prestige and that was more important. The peasants learned about courage from this incident and that they too had rights. Within a few years the British landlords gave up their estates. These now went back to the peasants. Eventually, indigo  sharecropping disappeared.
  36. Refer to answer 27.
  37. Refer to answer 27.
  38. Gandhiji considered the Champaran episode to be a turning point in his life perhaps because he declared that the British could not order him in his own country. It was for the first time that Gandhiji introduced a non-violent resistance, which came to be known as Satyagraha, against the Britishers. During this struggle, Gandhiji decided to urge the departure of the Britishers for the first time. The Champaran episode grew out of an attempt to alleviate the distress of large number of peasants and farmers and became the first civil poor disobedience movement led by Gandhiji. He, with local support, convinced poor farmers that they too had rights. When his lawyer friends suggested that having Mr. Andrews around would be beneficial for them, Gandhiji told them taking prove to help from a Britisher only shows the weakness in the hearts of the Indians. Gandhiji taught self reliance to his fellow Indians. The Champaran episode proved that if the cause was just there was nothing to fear, not even the Britishers; the victory was inevitable.

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