VAIKOM SATYAGRAHA Syllabus GS Paper 1 – History)

News-CRUX-10     1st April 2024        

Context: Recently, commemorating the Vaikom Satyagraha, a century has passed since its occurrence.

Vaikom Satyagraha

  • About: Originating in Travancore, now Kerala, the Vaikom Satyagraha stood as the pioneering anti-caste movement, challenging discriminatory practices.
  • Background: At the AICC meeting in Kakinada 1923, a petition was submitted to the Travancore legislative council, advocating for the right to temple entry regardless of caste, creed, or community.
  • Beginning of the Movement: Launched on March 30, 1924, the Satyagraha started with protests on public roads leading to the Shiva Shrine in Vaikom, where entry was restricted for marginalized and untouchable castes.
  • Prominent Social Workers: Periyar E.V. Ramaswamy and Sree Narayana Guru lent their support, with Periyar being notably arrested twice, earning him the title "Vaikom Virar."
  • Role of Gandhiji in the Movement: Gandhi strategized the involvement of Savarnas (forward castes) in support of the movement, leading to a procession to Trivandrum with a petition of 25,000 signatures for temple entry.
  • Significance: Gandhi's intervention in 1925 led to a resolution between the government and the Satyagrahis, resulting in the nullification of prohibitory orders and the opening of temple pathways to the public, albeit with certain restrictions.
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