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The conquest of India by the British, exposed some serious weaknesses and drawbacks of Indian social institutions. As a consequence several individuals and movements sought to bring about changes in the social and religious practices with a view to reforming and revitalizing the society. Elucidate. What were the various methods that were adopted to reform the Indian society?

Topic:  Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues;

2.  The conquest of India by the British, exposed some serious weaknesses and drawbacks of Indian social institutions. As a consequence several individuals and movements sought to bring about changes in the social and religious practices with a view to reforming and revitalizing the society. Elucidate. What were the various methods that were adopted to reform the Indian society? (250 words)

Reference: India’s Struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra.

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the evils prevailing in the India society which started the process of socio-religious reform movements and the methods adopted to achieve them.

Directive:

Elucidate – Give a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms where ever appropriate, and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

Begin by giving context to socio-religious reform movement of India in the nineteenth century.

Body:

In detail, mention the various evils – Sati, Child marriage, female infanticide, opposition to widow remarriage, caste system, lack of female education and communalism that were prevailing in the Indian society. Add how the British conquest of India exposed these drawbacks.

Next, mention various individuals and organisations that took up the cause of socio-religious reform movement in India. Raja Ram Mohan Roy and Brahmo Samaj, Ishawr Chandra Vidyasagar, M.G Ranade, Arya Samaj, Aligarh Movement and Jyotiba Phule etc.

Finally, mention the various steps that were taken to reform the India society. Reform from within, reform through legislation, reform through symbol of change and reform through social work. Give examples to substantiate your points.

Conclusion:

Conclude by writing how these played a part in revitalizing the Indian society as well as kindled nationalism among the masses.

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