HAPPENINGS AT BARDOLI



The Times of India published the following regarding happenings in Bardoli in its issue of the 20th Instant : "Agriculturists in Bardoli Taluka, it is reported, are resorting to a "Hijrat" (wholesale migration) from their villages, many of them having already removed all their moveable property. Cultivators in the taluka, it will be remembered, had resolved not to pay land revenue until Mr. Gandhi and Mr. Vallabhbhai Patel gave them permission to do it. Any stringent measures by Government for the collection of Land revenue, the villagers stated, would be defied and rendered nugatory by the latter talking the bold step of migrating into the territories of the adjoining Indian States. Information has just reached here from Bardoli that the people residing in almost all the villages of the Taluka have resolved on a "Hijrat", true to their challenge to Government. It is further stated that the inhabitants of Sarbhon, Kadod, Wankaner and Valod have begun to evacuate their villages and migrate into other places, taking with them the remnants of their movable belongings. It is difficult to ascertain how many families have so far left their homes. Unless the cultivators vacale the villages in large numbers one can hardly determine if they have left their homes for good or only temporarily or it is merely a gesture. The villagers have taken this step, it is alleged, as the result of the activities of Mr. Ismail K. Desai, Deputy Superintendent of Police, who has been specially appointed for political offences." In its issue of the 23rd, the same paper publishes the following from its correspondent in Poona where the Government of Bombay now is : "The report of wholesale migration of the people of Bardoli into surrounding Indian States has not so far become known in Government circles in Poona, but it is well known that many of the people are removing all their valuables and even their household goods in order to avoid their attachment for non-payment of land revenue. The local authorities have been making such reports for sometime, and there is no doubt that such a move is in keeping with their avowed intention to defy all attempts to secure revenue from them before they are instructed by the Congress leaders to pay. It has also been reported that in one or two cases women and children have been removed, but it is generally considered very unlikely that the cultivators themselves should leave now and go to Indian States on the borders of Bardoli, such as Baroda, Rajpipla, Bansda and Dharampur, where they would not be very welcome, particularly in view of the fact that in a few weeks their crops will be ripe for harvest." A reliable gentleman in Bombay told us the other day that he was getting private information to the effect that the exodus is due to the villagers not trusting themselves to remain non-violent under the provocations to which they were exposed. Some of the Bombay representatives to the Round Table  Conference would do well to pay a flying visit to Bardoli to ascertain the actual truth before leaving India. 

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