How did the court scene at Motihari change the course of India’s struggle for freedom?

In Champaran, the peasants were greatly in fear of the British government. The cause of the problem was indigo and the greed of the landlords. They had forced the tenants to plant 15% of their holdings with indigo and surrender the entire produce to the landlords. When synthetic indigo came, the landlords were ready to release the above condition. They demanded compensation, the repercussions of which the peasants did not know and agreed to it.

Later, when the peasants came to know about synthetic indigo, they asked for their money back. The British hired thugs to oppose them. Gandhiji realized that there was no need for lawyers. He realized that it was necessary to release them of their fear which was difficult to achieve as they were uneducated.

However, with his determination, he championed their cause. Soon, he led a movement of non-violence and Satyagraha. Many farmers demonstrated around the courtroom where Gandhiji was summoned. This made the British feel challenged. Share-croppers from Champaran came barefooted to see Gandhiji. Muzzafarpur lawyers too called on him. He explained what he had done was an ordinary thing. He had simply told the Britishers that they could not order him in his own country. Gandhiji tried to mould new free Indians who could stand on their own feet.

This new realization gave him a direction to lead the freedom struggle and thus, proved to be a turning point in the course of India’s struggle for freedom. This was the first time Gandhiji realised that India was capable of mass movements and it was after this episode that he started the national struggle for freedom across the country.

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