Jallianwala Bagh Massacre or Amritsar Massacre has remained one of the inhuman acts of violence in India. It is marked as a turning point in the Indian independence struggle. Jallianwala Bagh is a popular topic covered in UPSC as well as other competitive exams. If you aim to appear for any such exam, this blog will help you in getting a better understanding of the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre.
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Jallianwala Bagh Massacre
The Jallianwala Bagh Massacre also known as the Massacre of Amritsar incident took place on April 13, 1919, in which several British soldiers under the order of Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer opened fire on the innocent and unarmed Indian people. The Jallianwala Bagh site is now a national monument. The incident harmed Indo-British relations and symbol of sacrifice and struggle during independence.
Jallianwala Bagh Massacre Timeline
|Rowlatt Act was passed||March 10, 1919|
|Rowlatt Satyagraha||April 16, 1919|
|The arrest of prominent Indian leaders Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew||April 10, 1919|
|Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer got information about the gathering at Jallianwala Bagh||12:40 PM, April 13, 1919|
|Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer reached Jallianwala Bagh with his troops||Around 4:30 PM, April 13, 1919|
|Jallianwala Bagh Massacre||April 13, 1919|
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There is no single reason that led to the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre, there were various factors that led to the incident that is considered a black day in Indian history.
- During World War I, the British Indian Government practiced repressive powers. When the war ended, people hoped that they will be allowed a little more political freedom but it didn’t happen
- The British Government passed the Rowlatt Act, in 1919 to improve its grip over the local people of India. The motive of the government was to gain better control over people and to suppress the idea of independence that was prevailing among the people. According to the act, the police were allowed to arrest anyone without trial.
- This made various prominent national leaders angry and it was widespread anger among the common people. As the Rowlatt Act was implemented throughout British India, Gandhi also called a one-day Rowlatt Satyagraha, throughout the nation, to show their resistance towards this Act
- Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew were prominent Indian Congress leaders, and when people heard of their arrest in Amritsar, violent protests were started in that city. To stop the protests, soldiers fired on the civilians, which resulted in the death of several foreign nationals. After those incidents, common people gatherings were banned, and Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer was given a force of general troops to restore the order in Amritsar
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On April 13, 1919, around 12:30 PM, Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer got the news that there was going to be a meeting in Jallianwala Bagh due to the arrest of Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew. Around 4:30 PM, he entered the Jallianwala Bagh with his troops.
- At that time, more than 10,000 villagers, including men, women, and children were present, as it was also the festival of Baisakhi. The place was enclosed by the walls, and the only exit was covered by the troop of soldiers. Without giving any warnings, the troop, on the order of Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer opened fire on the innocent and unarmed crowd resulting in the death of around 1000 people, and injury to over 1500 people. The firing didn’t stop until the ammunition was exhausted
- After this shocking and inhuman incident, Rabindranath Tagore, the Bengali poet and Nobel laureate renounced the knighthood, and Mahatma Gandhi also started organizing large-scale protests to attain complete independence from the Britishers
- An investigation for this incident was ordered by the British Indian government also known as the Hunter Commission. The Hunter Commission held Dyer responsible for the incident and ordered him to resign from the military
Facts Behind Jallianwala Bagh for UPSC
Rowlatt Act officially known as the Anarchical and Revolutionary Crimes Act, 1919.
The Act was passed by the Rowlatt Committee, presided by Sir Sydney Rowlatt. It authorized the arrest, for 2 years without trial, of any person suspected of terrorism living in British India.
Two black bills authorized police to search a place without a search warrant and to arrest anyone who they disapprove of.
It started on 6th April 1919.
Dr. Satyapal and Saifuddin Kitchlew were arrested.
It took place on13 April 1919.
At least 1000 people were killed and more than 1500 were wounded, including various severely wounded people.
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