Since the decade of the 1920s, the national movement acquired various ideological strands and thereby expanded its social base. Discuss.

Sample Answer


The 1920s witnessed a transformation of the national movement.New strands emerged, embracing diverse ideologies and social  groups. Gandhian, communist and revolutionary strands mobilized peasants, workers, youths and women. Ambedkar championed  depressed classes. Despite differences, all opposed imperialism.This infusion of new groups and ideologies into the movement gave it mass momentum, diversity and dynamism which was instrumental in achieving freedom.


Gandhian mass movement 

  • Gandhi launched the non-cooperation movement (1920-22) and civil disobedience movement (1930) promoting satyagraha, non-violence, Hindu-Muslim unity, and social reforms.
  • This attracted peasants, farmers, students and women to the movement in large numbers. 

Revolutionary movements 

  • Revolutionary groups promoted armed struggle against the British.
  • Leaders like Chandrashekhar Azad and Bhagat Singh admired socialist and communist ideals.
  • Their actions and martyrdom inspired youths and students to join the anti-imperial struggle.

The Left 

  • The Communist Party was formed in 1925. It organized workers and peasants under its wing following the socialist vision.
  • This brought the marginalized sections of the society into the freedom struggle.  

Other strands 

  • Ambedkar championed the cause of depressed classes.
  • The All India Trade Union Congress was formed in 1920 to organize labor.
  • The Hindustan Republican Association worked for complete independence and a unified secular India.
  • These diverse strands significantly expanded the social base of the movement. 


The rise of Gandhian mass movements, revolutionary groups, communist parties and other strands in the 1920s diversified the composition of the national movement by bringing in peasants, workers, lower castes and women within its fold. This gave new life, vigor and momentum to the Indian struggle for freedom. The decade marked the transformation of the elite movement into a mass movement.

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