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Mangarh Massacre

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    History & Culture
  • Published
    2nd Nov, 2022


Ahead of PM Modi’s visit to Mangarh Dham in Banswara district, Rajasthan CM has sought the declaration of the memorial for tribals as a monument of national importance.

About Mangarh Massacre

  • Mangarh Dham is known for the massacre of tribals by the British Indian Army in 1913.
  • This place is widely referred to as Adivasi Jallianwala.
  • About 1,500 Bhil tribals and forest dwellers were killed at Mangarh on November 17, 1913, when the British Indian Army opened fire on the protesters.
  • The people were gathered to demand abolition of the bonded labour system and relaxation in heavy agricultural taxes imposed by the rulers of princely states.
  • The tribals in the southern Rajasthan region were led by social reformer Govind Guru.

Course of events

  • Govind Guru started his movement among Bhils in the early 1890s.
  • The movement had, as its religious centrepiece, the concept of a fire god, which required his followers to raise sacred hearths in front of which Bhils pray while performing the purifying havan called dhuni.
  • In 1903, the guru set up his main dhuni on Mangadh Hill.
  • Mobilised by him, the Bhils placed a charter of 33 demands before the British by 1910 primarily relating to forced labour, high tax imposed on Bhils and harassment of the guru’s followers by the princely states.
  • The Bhil struggle for justice under Govind Guru took a serious turn after the British and local rulers refused to accept the demands and tried to break the Bhagat movement in 1913.

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