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ween the two is gradually vanishing. But this fact has not removed the prejudice of government against Indians.
(17) Europeans (mostly belonging to the commercial community) are greater breakers of law than Indians of similar position. If confronted by the guardians of law, they get off with impunity by bullying them.
(18) The bye-laws of railways, tramways and other private undertakings are framed with an eye to the greater comfort and convenience of the European than the Indian. This is possible because the management of such undertakings is in the hands of Europeans.
(19) The Anglo-Indian press has been loud and strong in their vilification and abuse of Indians and in exciting racial feeling. But the government has made no attempt to stop this.
(20) The unrestricted practice of cow-killing in India has wounded the feelings of the majority of Indians. I have been assured on high authority that cow-killing is not sanctioned by Mahomedan law and it is quite possible to prohibit the practice without shocking the religious susceptibilities of our brother community. But the Europeans themselves are sinners in this respect.
They are unable, for the sake of appeasing the Hindu sentiment, to set an example of selfsacrifice to the Mahomedan subjects by foregoing beef-diet and resorting to mutton or goat meat. "I cannot,' wrote Zeller to Goethe, "conceive how any right deed can be performed without sacrifice". If the Europeans had considered this "right", I am sure they would have made this sacrifice.
It is these and such-like grievances, having their root in racial or economic causes, which lie at the bottom of the present discontents and which are responsible for the "sedition and anarchy" that are alleged to be rampant in the whole country. If the causes are carefully analysed, it will be found that the responsibility must
be fixed, in the last resort, (1) on government, (2) on the European community. And yet, by a curious irony of fate, it is these two bodies that are emphatic in their denunciation of these two crimes, and emphatic in their determination to enforce the most drastic measures for their repression. The Report of the Rowlatt Sedition Committee is replete with passages * which prove prima facie that repression has preceded and is the cause of anarchism,
These passages in the Report convincingly prove that the young men were goaded to desperation by certain measures which were disliked by the people. Except in the case of their association with the German plot, which may now be said to be finally crushed, there was no idea to overthrow government, but there was undoubtedly a firm resolve to make the administration impossible as a protest against its methods. The suggestion that their aim was to overthrow the "established government" of this country appears to me to be a pure fiction. Their efforts were directed not against "established government" but against its methods, and against individual agents of government. Overthrowing the methods of government is not synonymous with overthrowing the government itself. In any other State where foreign rule does not prevail, the methods adopted by these youths would not, in theory, be interpreted as seditious,
(*) (i) Mr. Rand, who had become unpopular owing to his being the officer charged with the enforcement &c (p. 3)
(ii) Among those who united to excuse the murder and to praise the bomb as a weapon of offence against unpopular officials was Tilak (p 6.)
(iii) In the year 1897 the Poona-ites were subjected to oppression at the time of the plague (p 7.)
(iv) The disorder which prevails owing to the pride of military strength (p 7.)
(v) Destroy the government because it is foreign and oppressive (p 8.)
(vi) Protest against the inhuman transportations and hangings of Indian youths (p 9.)
(vii) The collapse of the whole machinery of oppression is not far off (p 11.)
although they were certainly violent; for the right of resisting the government in extreme cases of political discontent is recognised in abstract political theory, and in no country except in India would such a right be construed as an attempt against the State, although it is undoubtedly an attempt against the constitution. The young men were, rightly or wrongly, smarting under the impression that the people were not treated with justice and consideration either by the rulers or by the members of the ruling race. Impulsive or impressionable nature is quick to take revenge. The form which this revenge took, in the absence of a constitutional remedy, was Swaraj i.e., government by themselves without the association of alien rulers. This was not a goal but an ideal-impracticable and imaginary. But like all ideals it sprang from the perception of an actual evil. An English political writer says: "Representative institutions, petitions, public meetings, a free press are various means through which the people can assert itself. When refused these means, and when yet sufficiently vigorous to use them, it will assert itself by armed rebellion or, if that is not possible, by secret conspiracies and assassinations. Political assassination is a clumsy and ineffective method of moving a vote of censure on the government in countries where the opposition has no constitutional means of expression. Statesmanship has been defined as the art of avoiding revolutions; and this is so far true that the wise statesman will make revolution impossible by making it unnecessary, or certain of failure because not supported by the General Will, "
A revolution, of course, is impossible in India, but the 'anarchism' is its substitute. If we survey the whole situation impartially, we have no difficulty in discovering that even "anarchism" has been magnified into something which it is not. Anarchism is the extreme form of individualism, and means the abolition of all govern
ment, the suspension of all sovereign power and the establishment of a form of individual rule. The more rigid and mechanical the autocratic power of government, the closer does this individualism resemble anarchism, because autocracy resents every form of resistance or restraint, however legitimate and constitutional, What is called "anarchism "" in India would never be called "anarchism " in England; indeed, anarchism cannot exist in the latter country. Anarchism is incompatible with the social nature of man which implies mutual dependence and mutual service. If this inter-dependence is assumed, anarchism, which implies absolute individual freedom, cannot exist in a wellordered society. Anarchism is the product of those countries where the "government" is divorced from the "State". It is pre-eminently a protest against autocratic rule; and in a democracy, it would be an anomaly, an exotic. Anarchy' has become a by-word in this country, because the political status of India is singularly anomalous; it is not a State" in the strict political sense of the term; it is, however, theoretically a democracy because the executive are responsible to a remote and indifferent democratic Parliament but it is practically an irresponsible autocracy. The political principles applicable to a "State' have been tried and applied in this country by administrators accustomed to the institutions of a free country. But India was unprepared for their reception and culture; and it happened that while the Englishmen were enjoying the fullest amount of freedom which they had carried with them from home, India suffered from the most flagrant inconsistency, namely the incongruous combination of the theoretical principles of liberty with the actual subjection of the people. The solution of this acute political problem has baffled some of the greatest of Indian statesmen imbued with the highest political sagacity and sympathy for the people. Such failures may in part be attri
buted to the opposition of the European community, whose vested interests in the country were too strong to give way to Indian interests. The European community in the preservation of these vested interests—which I repeat are economic and racial have not felt the slightest compunction in rousing the bitter feelings of the Indians. By their insults and rudeness, by their imperious and over-bearing attitude, by their assertion of racial superiority and reminder of Indian inferiority in all their relations with Indians, by their encroachment upon the civilisation and traditions of India, and lastly by the desecration of our sacred rights and sentiments-they have goaded a few people-happily not all-to desperate remedies because all other remedies had failed. The situation has been accentuated by government sitting with folded hands and looking listlessly upon the situation, unwilling or unable to repair the wrong which the people suffered at the hands of their European fellow-subjects. The AngloIndian Press fanned the flame by their cowardly, mean and scurrilous attacks upon Indians for their "aspirations" to a position of equality in an Empire of justice. This equality of course did not mean equality in political privileges-but ordinary equality in the eyes of law and equal opportunities to develop their capacity. The government which now accuses Indians of sedition and of exciting ill-feeling between one race and another looked with perfect unconcern upon a similar action on the part of the Europeans. It is not now fair to the Indian community to say that they are the authors of the sedition, whereas the real authors are the Europeans, who, having done the mischief, now try to shield themselves under the protection of government. What has the government done to stop the wrongs committed by Europeans against Indians? What has it done by way of warning them to restrain from indulging in speeches, writings and action which, every states
man could see, were pregnant with seeds of discontent and disaffection? What law did the government enact to remedy a state of lawlessness which, as it was unchecked, was to lead to worse and more serious lawlessness in the future? Did the government in the early stage of this ferment realise that there really existed a state of lawlessness in the country which should have been nipped in the bud? Did not the government display a lamentable lack of statesmanship and knowledge of national psychology in not appreciating the critical nature of the situation which events were slowly evolving? If anarchy is identified with lawlessness, the European community in this country are guilty of sowing the seeds of anarchism of which the whole country is now reaping the fruits. Those who have broken the 'law' of the country (I do not mean statutory law alone) by injuring the feelings of the people, their deep seated prejudices, their dearest and most cherished institutions by means of physical and moral coercion are anarchists of a worse and more cowardly type than the men, who, because they have had no constitutional remedy available to them, were forced, by pressure of circumstances, to have recourse to unconstitutional and violent methods.
A jealous and nervous desire to preserve the economic interests of the European community and to maintain the racial (as distinct from British) supremacy are the insecure pillars on which the government is supported. This fact has shaken the confidence of the Indians in its foundation on justice. They are under the impression, right or wrong, that the obstacle to the highest life of man here is the distribution of "partial justice in cases of conflict between an Indian and a European in the law courts, in public offices, in the field of commerce and industry, in, social functions and generally in their daily intercourse in life. "The essence of justice," says a great political thinker, "is that different individuals
are not to be treated differently except on grounds of universal application, and that the most prominent element in justice, as ordinarily conceived, is a kind of equality i.e., impartiality in the observance or enforcement of certain general rules allotting good or evil to individuals." This "universal justice" has been replaced by "partial justice"; and the change has been brought about by racial and economic causes.
The remedy for this state of things is "SelfGovernment." The Government of India has hitherto been a personal government, fluctuating in policy, fluctuating in political wisdom, fluctuating in methods, fluctuating in the appreciation of national psychology and fluctuating in its analysis of the lessons of experience. These fluctuations have been attributable to the personal factor in government. There has therefore been an antithesis between a varying and unstable element represented in the chief Magistrate and a stable though slowly evolving element represented in the nation. The psychology of the former has been changing and fickle; that of the latter, though changing, was a change of organic and steady growth from its primitive to its fully developed state, which, according to Aristotle, is called its "nature." It is difficult to reconcile these two elements politically :-one personal and the other organic in Indian society. An unstable element is unfitted, by the inconstancy of its nature, to govern a slowly evolving society containing in itself the elements of organic growth and stability. The combination is a psychological incongruity, but it has been maintained and preserved by artificial means which have proved disagreeable to both. The remedy therefore lies in placing the government, as far as the traditions, habits and sentiments of the people are concerned, in the hands of the stable element in society, viz., the people. Self-Government, though it may not please and appease the Europeans, will certainly please and appease the Indians. It is not to be
taken narrowly as a concession to political agitation, but as a concession to popular sentiments or general will, an affront to which leads to disaffection. It will facilitate and smooth the way to the steady evolution of the vital and stable element in society, unobstructed by the jarring elements that oppose it. It may not create a system of government that is efficient from the point of view of expert or the British administrator; but it will, if the European element is adaptable and flexible, bring about an adjustment between the conflicting sentiments and antithetic geniuses of the two nations. No government measures, no criticism or abuse by the Anglo-Indian Press, no vilification and insult by the European community, no threats nor acts of repression by government abuse of power can remove or cure the natural "defects of virtue" of a nation, Our nature hankers after ideals which we cannot realise; our nature repels certain foreign ideals which are forced upon us against our will. The European makes certain demands upon our nature which it is impossible for us to satisfy; we make certain demands upon the Europeans which they feel unable to satisfy. The former, on our part, is not an evidence of inefficiency. There can be no question of inefficiency in the management of affairs which are our own, or in the mismanagement, in the opinion of others, of affairs which are against our genius: there is no justification for abuse if we manage own matters badly; there is no object in criticism if we understand a question in a different light from others. Such questions arise when there is a conflict of interests, or conflict of spirit, or conflict of views or conflict of power between us and the Europeans. In such cases, we are not competent to pass a free verdict. We are forbidden from saying that a certain thing is good or bad for us. We accept the verdict of another because we are under the incubus of moral or intellectual serfdom engendered by poli
tical subjection. We say in cowardice of conscience what we ought not to say otherwise.
The remedy proposed by government for the suppression of sedition and anarchism may be materially effective; but it lacks moral force or sanction. And "the less the moral strength of any law, the greater the physical strength which government must exercise to enforce it." The analogy between anarchic India and the sick man demanding treatment by a specialist is amusing though not instructive. I wonder if it meant seriously. It is specious reasoning to argue that the remedy for a sick man is the medical treatment, however drastic, prescribed. by the specialist. But medical treatment alone is not effective. A man suffering from cholera stands little chance of being cured by external or internal application of "specialist" medicines if at the same time he is fed on ground-nuts, gram or Indian corn. He must be fed on barley water before the medicines can be expected to take effect. The whole substance of my argument is that a repressive bill alone is not adequate; and that simultaneously with measures for effectually dealing with sedition, measures should be taken for rooting out its ultimate causes. Cessante causa cessant effectus.
We do not want responsible government of the Australian or South-African type where the basest commercial instincts of the British race find free play; where the native and oriental immigrant population are exploited to a merciless extent in the interest of commerce and industry; where God's great gift to man, viz., freedom, is relentlessly used for the restriction of freedom, and abused in the persecution, exclusion and even extinction of the natives; where the government may be identified with a vast industrial and commercial organisation tending to "substitute interests for principles as the guiding star of political life"; and where the population is subjected to the most degrading disabilities in order that the white population may thrive and prosper
-a population which cares a two-pence for the reputation and fair name of the mother country. We hate such a system of responsible government: we hate it as an ideal; we hate it as a reality. We want a government which shall be responsible not to the interests of race or commerce but to righteousness and humanity, to justice and brotherhood-not partial or imperfect justice, but impartial and universal justice to black and white, to the Hindu or the Mussalman, to the Jew or the Christian, to the high and the low, to the rich and the poor.
I may possibly be accused, in writing this article, of ridiculing and contemning the Government of India and the European community. I emphatically, and without any tinge of hypocrisy, deny this charge. My chief object has been to diagnose the political situation of India from a psychological point of view; and if, in discussing the situation, I have made certain reflections, they are not meant in any way to wound the feelings of the European community, but to emphasise and give point to my theory. It is my desire, and it should be the desire of all who take an interest in the well-being of India, that all communities should live in a spirit of cosmopolitan brotherhood and not as distinct and isolated entities. The State may be composed of diverse elements: but organically it is one whole. It should be the aim of all citizens, Hindus, Mahomedans, Christians, Parsees etc., to live a life of universal brotherhood in the service of the State; and not of one community or class to dominate over all the rest; to make the task of administration smooth, and pleasant; to point out, in a friendly spirit, its defects and dangers; to advise how they can be removed. In the attainment of this aim, the psychological factor is often ignored; and the personal factor is idolised. My purpose throughout has been to enforce recognition of national psychology in framing measures intended for the promotion of social order and well-being.