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Delhi, with the joint scheme of reform. All over the country the Home Rule Leagues and District Associations re-echoed the same sentiments. The joint scheme was hailed as sufficient evidence that Hindus and Mahomedans could agree. The political Millennium had come, and the Hindu lion was ready to lie down with the Mahomedan lamb. The Shahabad anti-cow-killing riots of September 1917 provided sad evidence to the contrary,
The Congress proposals did not meet with universal acceptance. Considerable opposition was manifested to them in Madras by non-Brahman Hindus, such as the Panchamas or "untouchables' and a considerable section of the castes above them, under the leadership of the late Dr Nair and Sir T. Chetty, Chairman of the Madras Municipality. In Bombay the Mahars (or depressed classes) and in Bengal the Namasudras opposed the Reforms. All over India, the permanently resident minorities such as the Anglo-Indians and most of the Indian Christians were unfavourable. The anti-Reform speech of Raja Sobhanadri Appa Rao Bahadur, Zemindar of Telaprole, to a non-Brahman conference at Tinnevelly, shows the point of view of these classes
•Great Britain has no right to say to us, I will put over you an oligarchy in which you have no share, which you distrust, and which is socially contemptuous of you. I will let that oligarchy shape its policy as it pleases, and if you dare dispute this authority, then I, even if I disapprove this policy, will use the British army to enforce a non-British policy. We are not cattle to be sold by one master to another, with the further humiliation of having the first master standing by with a bludgeon, in case we object to be sold.'
Whilst Mr Montagu was in India, he desired to preserve an atmosphere of calmness for the consideration of his Reforms, For this reason, Mrs Besant was released from prison, and Sir Michael O'Dwyer, LieutenantGovernor of the Panjab, was called on by the Viceroy to apologise to those members of the Imperial Legislative Council whose feelings were hurt by Sir Michael's speech (September 1917), praising the work of the Panjab during the war, somewhat at the expense of the other provinces. In spite of these efforts at conciliation, Government received a rebuff in the election of Mrs Besant as President of the Congress which met at Calcutta in 1917, and by that of Mr Mahomed Ali as President of the AllIndia Moslem League, mainly because they had both been interned.
The Montagu-Chelmsford proposals for Reform, published on July 4, 1918, were intended as a recognition of the generous assistance in men, money, and supplies afforded by India during the war. By means of Western education, a New India has been formed, to a certain extent united in thought, purpose, and political outlook, which claims to direct its own affairs and govern itself. The object of the Reforms is to place India on the path to ultimate self-government within the British Empire. Mr Montagu and Lord Chelmsford remark that, if the reforms are to succeed,
Indian citizens will have to show capacity and self-reliance in the place of helplessness, to be animated by a sense of nationhood in the place of caste or communal feeling. They must be educated and stirred into becoming a nation. The masses accept any government which prevents others from robbing them, and by its system of civil jurisprudence allows them to enrich themselves. The placid, pathetic contentment of the masses is not the soil in which such Indian nationhood can grow, and we feel that in deliberately disturbing it, we are working for India's highest good.'
The originators of the Reforms acknowledge that it was a bold step to introduce responsible government into India ; and the whole scheme depends, for its success or failure, upon whether the educated classes will use the political power entrusted to them, not for their own selfish interests, but as trustees for the inarticulate masses, till the masses themselves can be taught to take an interest in their own government. They maintain that there is no alternative but trust in the educated classes, and that the late Mr Gokhale's example is an encouragement to hope for the best.
To admit Indians to political power the system of Dyarchy has been invented. In India the Dyarchy is a system of provincial government with two branches, one dealing with "Reserved' subjects, such as Land Revenue, Police, Law, and Order, and the other dealing with
• Transferred' subjects, such as Local Self-Government, Medical and Sanitary administration, Education, Public Works, Agriculture, and Charitable Endowments. The branch dealing with Reserved' subjects consists of a Governor and two Executive Councillors (one British and one Indian), and that dealing with "Transferred' subjects, of the same Governor and one or more Ministers nominated by him from among the elected members of the Legislative Council, who will hold office for the same period as the Council. The Governor, as President of both branches, will be able to promote co-operation between them, advise his Ministers, and, in the last resort, refuse assent to their proposals when the consequences of acquiescence would clearly be serious.' The Joint Parliamentary Committee rejected the MontaguChelmsford proposal for nominated Grand Committees of the Legislative Council, for the purpose of passing essential but opposed legislation, but allowed the Governors the power of passing laws in respect of · Reserved subjects on their own responsibility. The Budget is to be laid before the Legislative Council annually. If the Government proposals are not accepted, the Governorin-Council is to have the power to restore what has been rejected to the Budget, on his certificate that the expenditure is essential to the peace and tranquillity of the province, or for the discharge of his responsibility for 'Reserved' subjects. A Parliamentary Commission is to be appointed every ten years to report upon the progress of the Reforms, and whether more departments should be added to the Transferred 'list.
The Dyarchy system does not apply to the Government of India, in which the former Imperial Legislative Council is replaced by the Council of State and the Indian Legislative Assembly. The Council of State has a small official majority, and consists of sixty members, partly elected and partly nominated by the Viceroy, with a nominated President. Of the nominated members, not more than twenty may be officials. It is intended to check hasty or inconsiderate legislation. The Parliamentary Committee disapproved of the proposal to deprive the Legislative Assembly of the power of rejecting or modifying any Bill certified by the Viceroy to be essential to the interests of peace, order, and good
government, including sound financial administration, but gave the Viceroy the same power of passing laws on his own responsibility as is allowed to Provincial Governors.
The Indian Legislative Assembly consists of one hundred members, two-thirds elected, and one-third nominated, with a President possessing experience of the British House of Commons. To this post the Viceroy has appointed Mr A. F. Whyte, late M.P. for Perth; but, at the end of four years, the Presidents both of the Indian Legislative Assembly and of the Provincial Legislative Councils will be elected by the members instead of being nominated. In the Viceroy's Executive Council, three members of British birth are to be public servants with not less than ten years' experience in India, three are to be Indians, with a seventh member who must have definite legal qualifications, which may be acquired either in India or in the United Kingdom.
The percentage of Indians to be employed in the Indian Civil Service is to be 33 per cent. and is to increase every year by 1} per cent. to a maximum of 48 per cent., when the question of the percentage will come under the review of this Decennial Commission. The Government of India will be increasingly autonomous, as the Secretary of State's interference will be limited to cases in which India has to do with other countries included in the British Empire or with foreign nations. He will maintain a control over expenditure on 'transferred' departments which is likely to affect the prospects or rights of the All India services which he recruits. The cost of the India Office, including that of the Secretary of State's salary, is to be included in the British Estimates, and any member of the House of Commons wishing to criticise adversely British policy in India will have the power to move a reduction of the Secretary of State's salary, when the Estimates for the expenditure of the India Office are under consideration, instead of, as formerly, during the Indian Budget Debate.
Two Committees were appointed to investigate points connected with the Reforms. One, under the chairmanship of Lord Southborough, was to devise a scheme for the franchise, its duty being 'to number the persons who
can in the different parts of the country be reasonably entrusted with the duties of citizenship, and to ascertain what sort of a franchise will be suited to local conditions, and how interests, that may be unable to find adequate representation in such constituencies, are to be represented.' This Committee reported in 1919 in favour of a scheme for territorial constituencies with about 5,000,000 voters, and communal representation for Mahomedans, Sikhs, Indian Christians, Anglo-Indians, and Europeans. The greatness of the advance made in the direction of broadening the basis of political power will be appreciated, when it is remembered that under the Morley-Minto Reforms there were only about 33,000 voters. The other Committee met under the Chairmanship of Mr R. Feetham, Legal Adviser to the High Commissioner of South Africa. Its object was to secure autonomy for the Provinces, by dividing political functions and heads of revenue between the Government of India and Provincial Governments, in such a way as to relieve the Provincial Governments from the control of the Government of India, to the same extent as the Government of India itself was relieved from the control of the Secretary of State.
The Government of India Bill, embodying the Montagu-Chelmsford Reform proposals, was introduced in the Commons in June 1919. After its second reading, it was considered by a Joint Committee of the Lords and Commons under the chairmanship of Lord Selborne.* On the report of this Joint Committee, the Bill passed through its remaining stages in the Commons, was sent to the Lords, and received the Royal Assent in December 1919. No sooner were the Montagu-Chelmsford Reform Proposals published (July 4, 1918) than the Indian Extremist party began to find fault with them as insufficient. The refusal to extend the Dyarchy scheme to the Government of India especially excited their indignation. They gave the Reform Scheme but a short
* The Committee, in addition to certain modifications already mentioned, introduced two important amendments :
1. That India should enjoy the same Fiscal Liberty as the self-governing Colonies.
2. That the whole field of Education should be transferred' to Ministers.