Vallabhbhai Happy over Preparedness of People of Bardoli Taluka for Civil Disobedience

Vallabhbhai Happy over Preparedness of People of Bardoli Taluka for Civil Disobedience

Bombay Chronicle – 22nd November 1921

This inhabitants of the Bardoli Taluka hold themselves in readiness for the forthcoming campaign of civil disobedience, and as an earnest of their grim determination a procession was organised at Khojpardi on November 11th when the depressed classes mixed freely with other sections of inhabitants resolutely casting out all antiquated notions about untouchability. At Poida, too, at a meeting held two days previously, the inhabitants vowed to wear Khadi for all time and signified their willingness to practise civil disobedience and to refuse to pay taxes. The Leooa(Leva) Patidars of Badthal have adjured pugrees till the attainment of Swaraj and decided to use Khadi in marriages and funerals. In order to make assurance doubly sure, Mr. Vallabhbhai J. Patel,Barrister-at-Law, accompanied by Principal Gidwani of the Gujarat National University, Dr. Kanuga and Mr. Luxmidas Purshottam paid a visit to Bardoli on November 11th and addressed at Surat an audience of six thousand men and women on their return from the place with Mr. Syed Ahmed Edroos.

Mr. Vallabhbhai remarked on the threefold object of convening the present meeting, namely, to deliberate how to achieve Swaraj by the end of December in accordance with the Congress resolution, to decide on their course of conduct in respect of the Prince’s arrival on November 17th, and to devise means how best to help the Surat Municipal Board in the new situation that has arisen as a result of the Government Resolution inciting the rate-payers against the Municipality. They have deliberately excluded big cities, for Swaraj for the obvious reason that with their exquisitely laid out gardens, pestiferous gutters were inextricably bound up, and it was a matter of deep regret that Surat had not yet altogether emancipated itself from the seductive amenities of material civilisation. Swadeshi was the soul of Swaraj, and they could hope to unfurl the Swaraj Flag only if they made a clean sweep of the antediluvian concept of untouchability. His visit to Bardoli convinced him of its “thorough-preparedness” although he would defer his verdict about Surat till the decision of the ensuing meeting of the Executive Council of the Congress to be held at Surat on November 22nd, was known.


Proceeding, Mr. Patel observed that they bore no ill-will to the prince and if they resolved on observing a complete “hartal” on the day of his arrival in India, it was mainly because they protested against the way in which the visit was sought to be exploited. They were not in any way affected by what the toadies and Rao Bahadurs said or did. Regarding the step taken by the Government in respect of the non-cooperating Municipalities of Nadiad, Ahmedabad and Surat, they might rest assured of the dismal failure of it all provided their determination was unshaken at all hazards, and they refused to be hoodwinked by the attempt made to sow dissensions between the Municipalities and the rate-prayers. He was quite at a loss to understand why the Government trembled to translate the threat of suspending the Municipalities concerned into act.

Speech – 18th November at Surat

The Collected Works of Sardar Patel