Introduction for Round Table Conference in British India-
The Round Table Conferences were a series of three conferences held in London in 1930, 1931, and 1932 to discuss constitutional reforms in British India. The conferences were called by the British government to address the growing demands for Indian self-rule and to find a solution to the political crisis in India. The Round Table Conferences were attended by various political leaders and representatives from India, including the Indian National Congress, the Muslim League, and the Princely States, as well as British politicians and officials.
The Round Table Conferences were significant in shaping the political discourse in India and in laying the groundwork for the eventual drafting of the Indian Constitution. However, the conferences were also marked by disagreements and tensions between different political groups and between India and the British government. The Round Table Conferences ultimately failed to produce a consensus on the form of self-government for India, and the discussions were interrupted by the outbreak of World War II. Nonetheless, the conferences represented an important attempt by the British government to engage with Indian political leaders and to address the demands for greater self-rule in India.
What is round table conference in British India –
The British government’s official perspective on the Round Table Conferences held in London between 1930 and 1932 is available in various official documents and records from the time. Here are some highlights:
- – The Government of India Act 1935, which was passed after the Round Table Conferences, acknowledged that the conferences were held “in the hope of securing the co-operation of representatives of Indian opinion in framing a new constitution.”
- – The British government’s official report on the second Round Table Conference, published in January 1932, noted that “the Conference was unable to reach agreement on any scheme of constitutional reform.”
- – The report further stated that “the Congress representatives, who were the largest single group at the Conference, could not be persuaded to accept the principle of communal electorates, without which agreement was impossible.”
- – The official report on the third Round Table Conference, published in January 1933, noted that “the Conference failed to produce any concrete proposals for a new constitution.”
- – The report further stated that “the Muslim representatives insisted on the establishment of separate electorates for Muslims, which the Congress representatives refused to accept.”
Overall, the British government’s official perspective on the Round Table Conferences was that they were held in good faith to secure the cooperation of Indian opinion in framing a new constitution, but that they ultimately failed to produce any concrete proposals due to the irreconcilable differences between the Indian political parties on the issue of communal representation.
Why was the Round Table Conference held in England?
The Round Table Conferences were held in London, England because India was then a colony of Britain and the British government was responsible for administering the country. The conferences were convened by the British government as a way of addressing the growing demand for self-government in India and finding a way to accommodate the various interests and demands of the Indian political parties and communities.
The first Round Table Conference was held in November 1930 in response to the Indian National Congress’s demand for a round table conference to discuss constitutional reforms in India. The second and third Round Table Conferences were also held in London in 1931 and 1932, respectively.
The choice of London as the venue for the conferences was significant, as it allowed the Indian political leaders to directly engage with the British government and the British public, and to raise awareness about Indian political issues in Britain. The conferences also provided an opportunity for the Indian leaders to build networks with other political leaders from around the world and to gain international support for their cause.
Overall, the Round Table Conferences were held in London because it was the seat of the British government and the British Empire, and because it provided a neutral venue for the Indian political leaders to engage with their British counterparts in a formal setting.
Which report was recommends Round Table Conference?
The recommendation to hold a Round Table Conference to discuss constitutional reforms in India was made in the Simon Commission Report of 1930. The Simon Commission was a British parliamentary commission that was set up in 1927 to review the working of the Government of India Act 1919 and to make recommendations for further constitutional reforms in India.
The Simon Commission’s report, which was published in May 1930, recommended the establishment of a federal system of government in India, with the creation of autonomous provinces and the devolution of powers to the provinces. The report also recommended the introduction of responsible government at the center, with the eventual goal of granting India Dominion status within the British Empire.
However, the report was criticized by Indian political leaders and the Indian public for not including any Indian members, and for ignoring the demands for self-government and independence that were being voiced by Indian political parties and communities at the time. In response to these criticisms, the Indian National Congress passed a resolution in December 1929 demanding a Round Table Conference to discuss constitutional reforms in India with Indian participation.
The British government eventually agreed to convene the Round Table Conference in response to the Congress’s demand, and the first conference was held in London in November 1930.
Key Points of Simon Commission Report –
The Simon Commission was appointed by the British government in 1927 to review the working of the Government of India Act 1919 and to recommend changes. The key points of the Simon Commission Report, along with authentic British documents, are:
- – The report recommended the establishment of a federal system of government for India with limited central powers. The British government would retain control over defence, foreign affairs, and communications.
Authentic British document: The Government of India Act 1935, which was based on the recommendations of the Simon Commission, established a federal system of government in India with separate provincial governments and a central government with limited powers.
- – The report recommended the abolition of the diarchy system introduced by the Government of India Act 1919, which divided the powers of the provincial governments between elected Indian ministers and appointed British officials.
Authentic British document: The Government of India Act 1935 abolished the diarchy system and introduced provincial autonomy with elected Indian ministers.
- – The report recommended the extension of the franchise to include more Indians in the electoral process.
Authentic British document: The Government of India Act 1935 extended the franchise to include more Indians, although it still excluded a significant proportion of the population.
- – The report recommended the establishment of a central bank for India.
Authentic British document: The Reserve Bank of India was established in 1935, based on the recommendation of the Simon Commission.
- – The report did not recommend any significant changes to the communal representation system, which allocated seats in the legislative councils on the basis of religion.
Authentic British document: The communal representation system was retained in the Government of India Act 1935, which allocated a fixed number of seats to each religious community.
- – The report did not recommend any significant changes to the system of civil service recruitment, which was dominated by the British.
Authentic British document: The system of civil service recruitment remained largely unchanged after the Government of India Act 1935.
Overall, the Simon Commission Report recommended significant changes to the governance of India, including the establishment of a federal system of government and the extension of the franchise. Many of these recommendations were incorporated into the Government of India Act 1935, which became the basis for India’s constitutional structure until independence in 1947.
What was the debate between Gandhi and Ambedkar?
The Round Table Conferences were a series of discussions held in London in 1930-1932 between representatives from Britain and the Indian National Congress to discuss constitutional reforms in India. Mr. Gandhi and Dr. B.R. Ambedkar had different views on how the future of India should be shaped.
Gandhi represented the Indian National Congress, which advocated for a united India where all communities would be treated equally. He believed that India should achieve independence through nonviolent means, and that the British should leave India as soon as possible. Gandhi was opposed to the idea of separate electorates for different religious and castes groups, as he felt that it would only deepen the divide between them.
On the other hand, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar represented the Schedule Case & Schedule Tribe community and was a strong advocate for their rights. He argued that the depressed class, who had suffered from centuries of discrimination and oppression, needed a separate electorate to ensure that they had a voice in the political system. Ambedkar believed that a separate electorate was necessary to ensure that the depressed class were not ignored by the dominant upper-caste groups.
The debate between Gandhi and Ambedkar on the issue of separate electorates was intense, and it was one of the major points of contention during the Round Table Conferences. Eventually, a compromise was reached, and the British introduced a system of reserved seats for the backward classes of the society, which ensured that they had representation in the government.
Overall, the Round Table Conferences were a significant moment in the history of India’s struggle for independence, as they laid the groundwork for the formation of an independent Indian state. Despite their differences, Gandhi and Ambedkar both played important roles in shaping India’s future and fighting for the rights of all its citizens.
How Dr. Ambedkar nominated himself to Round Table Conference-
- – Mahad Water Agitation movement on 20 March 1927
- – Manusmruti Dahan Agitation movement on 25 December 1927
- – Kalaram Temple Nasik entry Agitation movement 2 March 1930
Dr. B.R. Ambedkar established himself as depressed class leader by fighting for their rights through above movements and for that reason nominated to the Round Table Conference by the then British Indian government as a representative of the backward class community. He was one of the leaders of the depressed class community who had been fighting for their rights and social upliftment for many years.
Ambedkar had been a prominent leader of the Dalit community, and had played an important role in the backward class movement for many years. He had been advocating for the rights of the their and had been pushing for reforms in the caste system. In recognition of his leadership and advocacy, the British Indian government nominated him to the Round Table Conference as a representative of the backward class community.
Ambedkar used this opportunity to present his views on the social, political, and economic issues faced by the backward class community in India. He argued strongly for the need to abolish the caste system and for the upliftment of the backward class. He also advocated for separate electorates for the Dalits, which he believed would provide them with the political representation they needed.
Despite facing opposition from some quarters, Ambedkar was able to make a significant impact at the Round Table Conference, and his ideas and proposals were taken into consideration during the drafting of the Government of India Act 1935, which granted India a measure of self-governance. Ambedkar’s nomination to the Round Table Conference was a significant moment in the history of the backward class community and their struggle for rights and representation.
Conclusion of Round Table Conference –
The Round Table Conferences held in London in 1930-1932 were an important milestone in the struggle for Indian independence from British rule. The conferences were intended to discuss constitutional reforms in British India and to find a solution to the political crisis in India. The conferences were attended by various political leaders and representatives from India, including the Indian National Congress, the Muslim League, and the Princely States, as well as British politicians and officials.
Despite the significant effort put into the Round Table Conferences, the discussions failed to produce a consensus on the form of self-government for India. There were disagreements and tensions between different political groups and between India and the British government. However, the Round Table Conferences were instrumental in shaping the political discourse in India and laying the groundwork for the eventual drafting of the Indian Constitution.
The Round Table Conferences were a significant step in the evolution of India’s independence movement, as they demonstrated the growing demand for self-rule among the Indian people and the willingness of Indian leaders to engage in constructive dialogue with the British government. The conferences also highlighted the differences and complexities of India’s political landscape and the challenges of accommodating the diverse interests and aspirations of the Indian people.