The Reforms of 1909 introduced cardinal problem and ground of controversy problem and ground of controversy at every revision of Indian electoral system. Comment.

The Reforms of 1909 is better known as Morley-Minto Reforms. The real purpose of the reforms of 1909 was to confuse the moderate nationalists to divide the nationalist ranks and to check the growth of unity among Indians.

The reforms introduced the system of separate electorate under which all the Muslims were grouped in separate constituencies from which Muslim candidates alone could be elected. This was done in the name of protecting the Muslim minority. But in reality this was a part of the policy of dividing Hindus and Muslims and thus maintaining British supremacy in India. The system of separate electorate based on the notion that the political and economic interests of Hindus and Muslims were separate.

This notion was unscientific because religion couldn’t be the basis of political and economic interest or of political grouping. What more important is that this system proved extremely harmful in practice. It checked the progress of India’s unification which had been a continuous historical process. It became a potent factor in the growth of communalism.

The real purpose of the Reforms of 1909 was to confuse the moderate nationalists, to divide the nationalist ranks and to check the growth of unity among Indians.

But, it could be said that these reforms of 1909 led directly or necessarily to establishment of a parliamentary system in India.

March 27, 2016
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