Why did the 'Moderates' fail to carry conviction with the nation about their proclaimed ideology and political goals by the end of the nineteenth century?

The moderates believed that the British basically wanted to be just to the Indians but were not aware of the real conditions. Therefore, there political activity majorly involved constitutional agitation within the confines of the law. They wanted to create a strong public opinion to arouse consciousness and national spirit and educate and unite the people on common political questions and eventually persuade the Britishers to introduce reforms in India. They followed the method of prayer and petition and if that failed, they resorted to constitutional agitation.

  1. The moderates achieved little success following such a methodology due to various reasons”
  2. The movement led by moderates had a very narrow social base and masses played a passive role. They lack political faith in the masses.
  3. They failed to widen their democratic base and scope of their demands.
  4. The method followed my moderates was widely criticized which also provided a base for the development of militant nationalism.
  5. The British government did not concede any of the major demands of the moderates. The Indian councils act 1892 was also severely criticized.
  6. The moderates were majorly from law and political background therefor the political jargons used by them were alien to the uneducated masses.

However, the early nationalists did a great deal to awaken the national sentiment, even though they could not draw masses to them. They represented the most progressive forces of the time. They exposed the basically exploitative character of the colonial rule and created a solid base for a vigorous, militant, mass based national movement in the years that followed.

Question for UPSC Mains:
Why did the 'Moderates' fail to carry conviction with the nation about their proclaimed ideology and political goals by the end of the nineteenth century? (150 words)

Published: October 30, 2017 | Modified:April 5, 2020

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