India Round Table Conferences

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

India Round Table Conferences


a series of conferences convened by the British government in London to discuss the recommendations proposed by the Simon Commission, which included a program of constitutional reforms for India. The first was held in 1930-31, the second in 1931, and the third in 1932. Representatives of the British Parliament, the Indian colonial administration, Indian princes, and various Indian political parties and organizations (including the Hindu Mahasabha, the Muslim League, the Liberal Federation, and the Scheduled Castes Federation) attended.

The Indian National Congress declared a campaign of civil disobedience and refused to participate in the first conference. In 1931 the Congress, represented by M. K. Gandhi, agreed to participate in the second Round Table Conference. The purpose of this step was to expose the colonial policy of the British government in relation to India, particularly its attempts to set religious communities, castes, and other groups against each other and thus to paralyze the Indian independence movement. Gandhi called for a union of all religious communities and castes to be established in order to carry on the struggle for the country’s independence The Indian National Congress did not take part in the third Round Table Conference; the agreed program for a new Indian constitution was never worked out.


Gordon-Polonskaia, L. R. “Podgotovka angliiskim pravitel’stvom novogo akta ob upravlenii Indiei i pozitsiia indiiskikh politicheskikh partii.” Uch. zap. In-ta Vostokovedeniia AN SSSR, 1957, vol. 18.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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