Do you think Mahatma Gandhi’s support to Khilafat Movement had diluted his secular credentials? Give your argument based on the assessment of events. (250 Words)

The following factors led to the formation of Khilafat Movement.

  • Defeat of Turkey in the First World War when Turkey was allied with Germany and Austria against the British.
  • Harsh terms of Treaty of Sevres (10 August 1920)

         The Ali brothers, Muhammad Ali and Shawkat Ali initiated the Movement.

The Khilafat issue merged with the fury of Indians over the publication of the Hunter Committee Report on ‘Punjab Massacre’ in May 1920. Gandhi saw in this, an opportunity to bring about Hindu-Muslim unity against the British. Gandhiji’s Non Co-operation Movement was the direct outcome of the Khilafat Movement. The Non Co-operation Movement had three objectives:-

  1. Settlement of Khilafat issue.
  2. Atonement for atrocities committed at Amritsar.
  3. Establishment of Swaraj or Self Government.

Gandhi always supported secular politics. In the Khilafat issue as Gandhi foresaw a great opportunity to cement Hindu-Muslim relations to make Indian politics more participatory and really secular. Gandhi involvement in the Khilafat movement had brought urban Muslims into the nationalist movement and had been thus responsible in part for the feeling of nationalist enthusiasm and exhilaration that prevailed in the country in those days.

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