Category: Swaraj Party

The Swaraj Party “Congress-Khilafat Swarajaya Party”

Swaraj Party, Indian political party established in late 1922–early 1923 by members of the Indian National Congress (Congress Party). Motilal Nehru and Chittaranjan Das were the founders of Swaraj Party. It was named as “Congress-Khilafat Swarajaya Party” in 1922. The Swaraj Party (also Swarajya Party) claimed to be an integral part of the Congress. But it set up a separate organization under separate leadership of Chittaranjan Das (C.R. Das) and Motilal Nehru. The Swaraj Party accepted almost entire programme of the Congress.The party’s primary goal was to contest the elections to the new Central Legislative Assembly in 1923 and, once in office, to disrupt official policy and derail the Raj (British government in India) by antigovernment agitation within the council chambers. Though the noncooperation approach of Mohandas K. Gandhi had remained the primary strategy of the Congress, in reality those Congress leaders who were less-orthodox Hindu or who were more secular-minded in outlook chose the alternative tactic of partially cooperating with political reforms being instituted by the British after World War I. The Swarajists won more than 40 seats in the Central Legislative Assembly in 1923, but their numbers were never quite enough to prevent the British from passing the legislation they desired or believed was needed to maintain internal order in India. By 1927 the party had disbanded. The radicals within the Congress, led by Jawaharlal Nehru and Subhas Chandra Bose, became more assertive. The liberals and moderates, who were proposing a constitutional system within the framework of British dominion, gradually lost their influence. In December 1929, under the presidency of Jawaharlal Nehru, the Lahore Congress formalized the demand of ‘Purna Swaraj’ or full independence for India. It was declared that 26 January 1930, would be celebrated as the Independence Day when people were to take a pledge to struggle for complete independence. But the celebrations attracted very little attention. So Mahatma Gandhi had to find a way to relate this abstract idea of freedom to more concrete issues of everyday life.