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|Date Added||Sep 10, 2022|
The Rowlatt Act & Jallianwala Bagh Massacre Overview
The Rowlatt Act was passed by the British government to enhance their superiority over the common people. This law was passed in March 1919 by the Imperial Legislative Council which gave them the power to arrest any person without any trial. To abolish this act, Gandhi and the other leaders called for a Hartal ( a time of fasting and suspension of work) to show Indians’ objection with this rule.
The Jallianwala Bagh massacre or the Amritsar Massacre took place when many villagers gathered in the park for the celebration of Baisakhi. The gatherers wanted to also peacefully protest the arrest and deportation of two national leaders, Satyapal and Saifuddin Kitchlew.
Shortcomings in the Rowlatt Act
- Many Indian leaders and the general people were outraged by the Act, pushing the government to adopt oppressive actions.
- The Act gave the government the authority to detain anybody suspected of any revolutionary activities for up to two years without charge or trial.
- It also made it possible to detain and arrest someone without a warrant for an indeterminate period of time. Other provisions were no-jury trials for political conduct that were outlawed.
- Following their release, convicted persons were expected to deposit securities and abstain from participating in any political, religious, or educational activity.
- The Rowlatt Act also severely restricted freedom of press.
- This Act is in violation of basic human rights and legal rights.
- This legislation sought to encourage arbitrariness, rendering huge discretionary powers in the hands of the government.
- On account of its legal perspective, it is short of the procedural aspects in a number of provisions.
Before independence, the British passed a number of restrictive laws. Among these was the Rowlatt Act, which was enacted to combat the rise of nationalism in the country. Unfortunately, it culminated in the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre, which has left an indelible mark on Indian history. On the other hand, this piece of law provided the necessary momentum for the beginning of the independence movement. The Rowlatt Satyagraha has its own significance in the Indian freedom struggle. Due to its enlarged darker side, this has been later repealed by the Repressive laws Committee. Its current relevance can also be linked to the present preventive detention laws.