The Gandhi-Irwin Pact was a political agreement signed by Mahatma Gandhi and Lord Irwin, Viceroy of India, on 5 March 1931. It was signed before Second Round Table Conference in London.
In October 1929, Lord Irwin had announced an indefinite offer of dominion status to British-occupied India in an unspecified future and a Round Table Conference to discuss a future constitution.
Terms of Gandhi-Irwin Pact
In this agreement, Lord Irwin has accepted that –
- Removal of all prosecutions relating to several types of offenses except those involving violence
- Indians will be given the right to make salt along the coast.
- Indians can picket in front of liquor and foreign clothing shops.
- Those who resigned during the movement will be restored to their posts.
- The property seized during the movement will be returned.
Gandhiji accepted the following terms from the Congress –
- The civil disobedience movement will be suspended.
- The Congress will join the Second Round Table Conference.
- The Congress will not boycott British goods.
- Gandhiji will give up the demand to investigate the excesses of the police.
View of Britishers on the Gandhi-Irwin Pact
Numerous British officials in India and Great Britain were offended by the ideo of a pact with a party whose main purpose was the destruction of British Raj.
Winston Churchill openly stated his objection “…at the nauseating and humiliating spectacle of this one-time Inner Temple lawyer, now seditious fakir, striding half-naked up the steps of the Viceroy’s palace, there to negotiate and parley on equal terms with the representative of the King Emperor.”
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