Modern Indian History-Events and Personalities

In news: Pal-Dadhvav Massacre


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Pal-Dadhvav Massacre

Mains level: Major tribal uprisings in freedom struggle

The Gujarat government has marked 100 years of the Pal-Dadhvav killings, calling it a massacre “bigger than the Jallianwala Bagh”.

Pal-Dadhvav Massacre

  • The massacre took place on March 7, 1922, in the Pal-Chitariya and Dadhvaav villages of Sabarkantha district, then part of Idar state.
  • The day was Amalki Ekadashi, which falls just before Holi, a major festival for tribals.
  • Villagers from Pal, Dadhvav, and Chitariya had gathered on the banks of river Heir as part of the ‘Eki movement’, led by one Motilal Tejawat.
  • The movement was to protest against the land revenue tax (lagaan) imposed on the peasants by the British and feudal lords.
  • Tejawat, who belonged to Koliyari village in the Mewad region of Rajasthan, had also mobilised Bhils from Kotda Chhavni, Sirohi, and Danta to participate.

The fateful day

  • Tejawat had been outlawed by the Udaipur state, which had announced a Rs-500 reward on his head.
  • The Mewad Bhil Corps (MBC), a paramilitary force raised by the British that was on the lookout for Tejawat, heard of this gathering and reached the spot.
  • On a command from Tejawat, nearly 2000 Bhils raised their bows and arrows and shouted in unison- ‘We will not pay the tax’.
  • The MBC commanding officer, HG Sutton, ordered his men to fire upon them creating a huge stampede.
  • Nearly 1,000 tribals (Bhils) fell to bullets. While the British claimed some 22 people were killed, the Bhils believe 1,200-1,500 of them died.

Must read:

Important Rebellions and Peasant Movements


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