The Non-Cooperation Movement was suspended but it left a legacy of hope for the people at large. The British also came to realise the meaning of Gandhian revolution.
The rulers of the Empire found themselves no longer in a secured place. Just after the revolution, Gandhi was sent to the prison for a longer term and he was released from the jail in February 1924.
Then he and his close followers, Rajendra Prashad and C. Rajagopalachari were busy in the constructive programme like hand spinning in Charkha and uplifts of harijans that attracted mass involvement in the Congress Movement. Many Congress members were not willing to abandon political action.
They wanted to fight elections under the Act and enter into the Legislative Council and fight for Swaraj from the floor of the Council. In 1922, they formed, under the dynamic leadership of Motilal Nehru and Chitta Ranjan Das, a new party. The group in support of the change was identified as pro-changers, and formed a party in the name of Swaraj or Swarajya Party. Other group in the opinion of no change in policy was called no-changers.
The Swaraj Party members fought the election in 1923 and entered into the Councils as an aggressive element to fight for Swaraj from within. In the meanwhile the British diplomacy was working hard to break the unity of the Hindus and Muslims. The Khilafat agitation was dead due to the change in the political scenario in Turkey. Taking advantage of this the British won over the minds of the Muslims to their side.
Communal differences were growing large. Riots took place in many parts of India. Consequent upon this attitude of the British, the Congress met in a special session in Delhi in September 1923. A compromise between no changers and pro-changers was arrived at. Gandhi under the mental agony of communal disharmony decided to undertake a fast for 21 days.
It had its noble effect on the country. Leaders of various communities and parties united to work for communal peace. Gandhi then devoted his mind and time to prepare India for the real Swaraj. He prepared a detail programme of work for socio-economic and political regeneration of the people of India. Hindu-Muslim unity, removal of untouchability and the spread of Khadi became his slogan.
In the Congress Session at Belgaon in 1924, Gandhi as the President directed the party workers to go to their respective areas and to spread the message of Khaddar, the message of Hindu-Muslim Unity, the message of anti-untouchability and to train the minds of the youth of the country to be the real soldiers of Swaraj. He wanted to see an integrated India.
Gandhiji gave his blessings to the leaders of the Swaraj Party. In the election of 1925 Swarajist leader Vithal Vai J. Patel was elected President of the Central Legislative Assembly. The Deshbandhu C.R. Das who had refused to head the Ministry in Bengal was elected Mayor of Calcutta and contributed a valuable service for his country-men. The tragic death of this great-man resulted in the process of disintegration of the Swaraj Party.
As time advanced the country was getting ready for a fight under the guardianship of Gandhi. Gandhi became happy over the change and decided to begin with the next programme for struggle for Swaraj. The political scene all over India was getting change quickly. In Madras the Justice Party was ready for a social change. In the Punjab the Sikhs began an Akali movement to regain the control over their gurudwaras previously managed by the corrupt Mahantas.
The Akalis after heroic campaign captured their Holy Shrines. This movement was sectarian but not communal. The Hindu Mahasava opposed the ego of the Muslim League which was busy in countering the influence of the majority community. The League’s success in obtaining concessions from the Government encouraged Hindu fundamentalists to establish an All India Hindu Organisation in the name of Hindu Mahasava. The result naturally enough aggravated communal tensions.
The workers and Peasants Party came into prominence in 1927. Thus the trade union movements and the peasant’s movements in future had their echoes all over the country. In the midst of all these political activities, on behalf of the labouring class, the communist party became a powerful force in India led and organized by Manabendra nath Roy.
Despite many developments the general condition of the country in 1927 was one of wariness and apathy. Communalism was a festering wound that erupted sporadically in riots and bloodshed. In this unpromising situation the announcement of the formation of the Statutory Commission by the British dropped like a bombshell in India. With the national spirit growing rapidly the Congress and other Political Parties in India felt disappointed with the working of the Indian Act of 1919.
The country became more conscious than ever before. Demands for Self-Government were piling up from every quarter. The British Government therefore decided to make a fresh assessment of the Indian demands and accordingly appointed a parliamentary Commission in November 1927. This Commission with seven members was headed by Sir John Simon.