Thursday, June 12, 2008


In India Student Movements have more than 150 years of history. In 1848 Dadabhai Navaroji founded ‘The student’s scientific and historic society, as a forum for discussion. This can be considered to be beginning of student movements in India In this period, the part of the struggle students questioned education system itself.. The first student strike happened at King Edward Medical College Lahore regarding academic discrimination between the English people and Indians. This strike was a complete success. As the part of the freedom struggle there were so many student movements emerged and engaged in it. Between 1906 &1918, 184 persons are convicted in Bengal in connection with revolutionary activities, 68 were students. ‘Charka Swaraj first, and education after” was the motto of the second all India College students Conference held at Ahmedabad on1912. The students were fully committed to work for the freedom of the India.
The Independence of our nation was one of the turning points of the student movements in India. There was a marked change of perspective with in the leadership of the student movements. In the place of the mass student organizations, a number of local groups mostly of an adhoc nature have developed. Agitations have tended to be localized forced on university issues or local political conflicts, rather than on rational or broader ideological questions. In 1947 the All India Student Congress Federation (AISCF) splited and it converted in to National Students Union of India (NSUI). It became the student wing of the Congress party. The different student movements were emerged in to the different states or a specified locality. The Nav Niraman Student Movement In Gujarat(1973), Bihar Student Movement(1974), Asam Student Movement(1979),All Jharkhand Students Union(1986) are the examples. There was growing awareness among a section of students and intellectuals, that the struggle for national independence has to be linked with the struggles of workers and farmers for a better life, free from exploitation. For them “Freedom for Whom?’ become the vital questions
The next phase of the student movements starts with the beginning of the 1990s with the dawn of the Globalisation, Privatisation and Liberalisation agenda, proliferation of media and emergence of post modernity.
The student movements in India have emerged in critical historical junctures responding to issues and challenge faced by them and society at large. There can be three broad periods such as Pre- Independence Period, Post Independent Period and the Globalisation Period.
1. Pre- Independence Period
The most important struggles for freedom were led by students.
Swadesi Movement(1905)
This movement has been treated as the beginning of the Indian Student Movement. This gave students a revolutionary outlook which called them to boycott colleges as well as British Goods, Student clubs. It grew all over introducing students to active politics. 'Charka Swaraj First and Education after' was the main motto of students at that time.
1st Non Cooperation Movement (1919)
As the Part of this movement The All India College Students Conference held at Nagpur in1920, the resolution on non-co-operation and boycott of schools and colleges is passed with an overwhelming majority. Boycott of schools and colleges bcome an integral part of the non-cooperation movement.
2nd Non Cooperation Movement (1930)I
This was another call to students. Students led processions, organized hartals and courted arrest in big numbers in Punjab, Bengal, UP and Bombay. This was the most active period of political agitation by Indian students. In 1936 at the first All India Students Confrence at Lucknow, 986 student delegates from 210 local and11 provincial organizations from Punjab, UP, CP, Bengal, Assam, Bihar and Orissa attended the Conference.
Quit India Movement (1942)
In the first time in the history of India there was such a large majority of students involved in a struggle. The students successfully manage to shut down most of the colleges and involved most of leadership responsibilities and provided the link between the underground leaders and the movement.

As it was pointed out early, there was a marked change of perspective with in the leadership of the student movements in the post independent era.. In the place of the mass student organizations, a number of local groups mostly of an adhoc nature have developed. Agitations have tended to be localized forced on university issues or local political conflicts, rather than on rational or broader ideological questions. But students responded to the critical issues of each period and agitated in the forefront. They ere actively involved in the Naxalite movement ,Chipko movement,Anti Emergency Movement, Mandal Agitations
Naxalite movement
The Naxalite movement are powerful in the states like West Bengal, Kerala, AP And Bihar In 1967 the Naxalite movement in West Bengal draws the best of students from Calcutta and elsewhere in to the struggle. Large number of students and youths from Calcutta join in the campaign against landlordism, feudal exploitation and social humiliation of the tribals, land less peasants and agricultural laborers at the hand of jotedars and moneylenders. They help the village peasant communities in maintaining discipline as well as in activities such as seizure of corps. severe repression in West Bengal and Kerala led to a large number of students getting killed or arrested for their involvement in 'Naxalite'-Maoist-activities Chipko movement
In 1960, a group of socially conscious men in Gopeshwar, from a labor co-operative called Dashauli Gram Swaraj Sangh (DGSS) under the leadership of Chandi Prasad Bhatt. The aim was to give jobs to the local men near their hometowns by setting up forest based small-scale industries. In1972 the forest department refuses t supply the DGSS with their annual quota of qash, and auctions the trees to Simon Company a sports manufacturer in Allahabad. Faced with the possibility of having to close down their carpentry workshop, the DGSS decides to fight back. The first protest-chipkotpe, hugging the trees to save them from the contractors. Take place at manda on 24th April 1973.In January 1974, when the Rein forest were to be auctioned, a large number of students and youths campaign against the auction at Dehradum. Students and youth activists go on the historic march of 44 days in the villages from 25 may-8 July 1974over 700 KMs. Chipko movement encourage students to organise educational padayatras to villages during three vacations, which becomes the most important means of mass education.
Dalit movements
Republic Yuvak Sangatan (RPI) 1961 was the first dalit student movement in India. It was formed to fight casteism, to provide protection to scheduled casts and to survey castatrocities. Though it claims to be an All-India body, The another movement founded by Ambedkar was 'All India Scheduled Caste Students Federation.' With the formation of the Republican Party Republican Students Federation' was also formed' later it was changed as Vidharaba Republican Students Federation (VRSF). The first VRSF conference was held at Pulgaon in 1967. The 2nd .3ed and 4th conventions were held at Amravati (1970), Dhamangaon (1971) and Akola (1974). The main objective of VRSF was to follow the path initiated by Lord Buddha and adopted by Ambedkar. With the emergence of VRSF, various small organised units of students have merged with it. VRSF has been actively involved in college and university union elections as well as organising rallies and dharnas against social discriminations.
Anti-Mandal Student Agitations
In 1990August 7 the VP Singh Government announces, at the RajyaSabha, its decision to implement the Mandal Commission report. 'Spontaneous' but well organised student agitation against the implementation of Mandal Commission rock Delhi. High Cast Students from St.Steephen College and Delhi School of Economics lead the agitation. The agitation catches most of the political student groups in the universities unaware .2000 Delhi University students protest at the directorate of Dooradarshan Kendra. with the Banner of Anti Mandal Commission Forum. The agitation in Rajstan continues for the 5th day. In Jaipur the students block tragic in several places. In Bihar some students open fire at the L.N.Missra Institute of Economic Development and Social Change. Students continue boycotting classes in Delhi, UP, and Rajstan. Three office-bearers of JNU students union resign from their posts in protest against the Mandal Commission .Students of Calcutta University boycott classes. "A Reservation policy based on economic considerations, and not on caste consideration, is always welcome" n the final word of the struggle they are not ready forth.
Globalisation Period
During this period most of the student movements are faced the ideological problems including the left student movements. The thinking and behavior of the students totally changed. They are done their part visualizing the concept of building a just world order. Most of the student Movements made compromises for their survival. Dalit Students Movement is the only movement emerged in this period as the result of the postmodern scenario. (?)
Women student's movements
‘MANUSHY’ was the effort of some women students in Sanskrit College Pattambi 1990 for addressing the issues of women students in Campuses It was the rare initiative of the women students in Kerala. It also address the non addressing women problems in 1990.
Cyber activist student movements
Free Software Movement is the digitalistic version of our struggle against globalisation. This is the movement against the monopoly of the Micro Soft corporations in the soft ware industry. It focused on the study, copy, modify and redistribution of software. It is the struggle against to the monopoly of knowledge. Now this movement is active in most of the Engineering Colleges in Kerala. Calicut NIIT conducted India’s biggest free soft were workshop is one of its example. of this trend. The students from the different professional colleges in Kerala conducted a training Programme for teachers in Govt IT Schools with its impact government substitute free soft were with Microsoft. It was the creative resistance of the professional college students against Globalisation.
Left Student Organisations
During the time of the Quit India Movement the Socialists had a special appeal to students due to their heroic role. They broke away from the Congress and formed Young Socialist League in 1948 and to take clear-cut stand.
1. All India Youth Federation (AIYF)
AIYF founded as the youth wing of the Communist Party of India in 1959. “As a broad united platform of progressive and democratic section of the younger generation”.
2. Student Federation of India (SFI)
Student Federation of India was founded as the student wing of the CPI (M) in 1970 “To organize the students to fight a democratic and progressive education system and for the uplift and betterment of the lot of the student community”.
3. Progressive Students Organisation (PSO)
In 1983, at the time when anarchy, lumpenisation and administrative indifference spoil the campus atmosphere and when student movements were moving from the mainstream democratic issues to ethnic demands. The progressive Student Organisation (PSO), did not follow the 60s radicalism. It acts as an autonomous, democratic student movement involved in day to day issues of the campus and other larger matters of student interest. On 17 January 1991, over 200 members of the PSO stage a protest near the USIS office at Calcutta against “U.S Imperialism” in Iraq Gulf War.
4. All India Students Association (AISA)
1990 AISA formed as a student wing of the CPI (ML).It leads the way towards a formation of a national platform. AISA becomes also a member of Asian Students Association (ASA).Soon AISA involved itself in combating the growing menace of communalism. And it expands to other campuses besides Allahabad.
Religious/Faith oriented Student Organisations
Student Christian Movement of India (SCM)
In India, S.C.M started its work in 1912. At that time, it was also the part of the freedom struggle and against to the western colonialism. The main aim of SCM is to orient the students with Christian Faith through social realities.
All India Muslim Students Federation (AIMSF)
AIMS created by the Muslim League in 1937 for catering Muslim students and advocate a separate state for Muslims. The movement did not participate in the Independence movement and was concerned only with defending Muslims whenever they were attacked.
3. The Hindu Students Federation (HSF)
In 1936, The HSF is started by and along the ideology of RSS in the 1930s. The movement directly appeals to the sentiments of HINDU youth from its inception. It did not participate with the Freedom struggle.
Akhila Bharathiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP)
In 1949, ABVP is formed as the student wing of RSS by leading educationists, students and teachers in Delhi. The major aim of this movement is to mobilize student power towards the task of national reconstruction.
5. All India Catholic University Federation (AICUF)
AICUF stated in 1949 with the aim of providing faith orientation through the sociality for the students from the Catholic Church. It is the succedeary wing of the international student group ‘IMCS-Pax Romana’
National Students Union of India
In 1947 after the independence of our country: The All India Student Congress Federation (AISCF) is converted in to National Student Union of India. It became the student Wing of the Congress Party. The basic aim of this movement was to organise students on a broad-based nationalist, secular, democratic platform in accordance with the Indian National Congress.


Unknown said...

very very important site all about student movements very fine and elegant work

Vipaschit said...

Please can give book reference on Student Movement. Very good article .. please share the reference

Saileena said...

Hi, this is a pretty great article. Could you help out with more info on The Hindu Student Federation(RSS ideology one)...any book, online source, anything more on this?

Ish Mishra said...
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Ish Mishra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

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Anonymous said...

blast from past !! Students power ✊
NSUI Delhi University.

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Sursurbatti said...

You have not mentioned anything about the only student organisation alive in India which actively fought the British. You have missed a MAJOR CHAPTER in the history of Indian Student Movement - about the All India Students Federation. Please do learn about it and revise this article to make sure it is of some worth.

Unknown said...

The First student organization is All India Students Federation ,founded in
the year 1936.

This information is not here .