Swaraj Party

C.R. Das and Motilal Nehru advocated a new policy for continuing the struggle against the colonial rule. They were of the view that nationalist should stop boycotting the legislation council and should participate in it. The mask of bureaucracy should be removed by obstructing all the work.

In December 1922, the President of Congress, C.R. Das and M.L. Nehru (Secretary) proposed this new program of joining legislative assembly at Gaya session and they argued that this would change the structure of council or would be finished (Pro Changers). But, the other group of Congress led by Vallabh Bhai Patel, Rajendra Prasad and C. RajaGopalChari opposed it ( No Changers).

Then, C.R. Das and M.L. Nehru resigned from the congress and they founded ' Congress Khilafat Swaraj Party' which is popularly known as ' Swaraj Party' (1 Jan 1923 at Allahabad). Its first president was C.R. Das. Swaraj Party was supported by Vitthal Bhai Patel, Madan Mohan Malviya and M. Jaykar.

Gandhi opposed the concept of entering into legislative council and obstructing its work but he called Swarajist as Able, Experienced and Honest patriots.

Congress allowed its workers to vote. C.R. Das, M.L. Nehru and Gandhi signed a joint statement according to which Swarajist would continue to work in the council.(Gandhi- Das pact, 6 November 1924).

On 6 November 1924, Gandhi sorted out the difference between Pro Changers and No Changers. The Belgaon session of congress presided by Gandhi, approved Gandhi-Das pact. Gandhi gave substantial representation to the Swarajist in the congress.

The election for the Central and Provincial legislative was held in November 1923. Swarajist had very little time for convincing and only 62 lakh ie less than 3% were given the right to vote. Swarajist succeeded in 42 out of 101 in central legislative assembly and clear majority in provincial assembly, largest party in Bengal but was unsuccessful in Madras and Punjab.

Swarajist formed alliance with the followers of Jinnnah in central legislative assembly. It also included liberals and some independent like Madan Mohan Malviya.

In 1925, Swarajist succeeded in getting Vitthal Bhai Patel elected as the speaker of Central Legislative Assembly (First Speaker). The Swarajist raised the following issues:
(1). Change of constitution for the establishment of self rule.
(2). End of repressive law.
(3). Development of indigenous industries.

Civil Disobedience enquiry committee (1922) corporation elections were held in 1923, Mayors elected were: C.R. Das (Calcutta), Vitthal Bhai Patel (Ahmedabad), Rajendra Prasad (Patna), Jawahar Lal Nehru (Allahabad).

Swaraj Party caused the setting up of Alexander Mundiman Committee for inquiring into the act of 1919 (Montague Chelmsford reform).

C.R. Das died on 16 June 1925. Lala Lajpat Rai and Madan Mohan Malviya left the party over the issue of sharing of power and communalism.

Cause of downfall of Swarajist Party - Communalism. Swaraj party could not gain expected success in the elections of November 1926. 1926 is observed as 'year of silence'. The failure of government in 1928 over the issue of 'Public Safety Bill' is worth mentioning and all the nationalist leaders opposed it. Pushottam, Thakur Das and G.D. Birla also opposed this bill.

Reactionary Leaders- Lal Lajpat Rai, Madan Mohan Malviya and N.C Kelkar, advocated to support the government and in return asked for the protection of Hindus.

Gandhi sat on fast after the outbreak of communal riots in the house of Maulana Mohd. Ali for 21 days (September 1924).