The condition of Russian people, especially those of the working population like the farmers and the factory workers was highly miserable. It was mainly due to the autocratic government of the Tsar Nicholas II who antagonized these people day-by-day by his corrupt and oppressive policies. As a result of such policies, his autocracy collapsed in 1917.
The following points indicate the background of the miserable condition of the working population of Russia which was also the main reasons for the collapse of the Tsarist autocracy in 1917:
1. The peasants worked as serf on the land and much of their produce went into the hands of landowners and the privileged classes. Land hunger among farmers was a dominant factor. Due to the various oppressive policies and out of frustration, often they refused to pay rent and even murdered landlords.
2. The condition of the workers was also very deplorable. They could not form any trade unions and political parties to express their grievance. Most industries were run by the private industrialists. Many times these workers did not get even the minimum fixed wages. There was no limit of working ours as a result of which they had to work from 12 - 15 hours a day.
3. The autocratic rule of the Tsar had become quite inefficient. He was a self-willed, corrupt and oppressive ruler who never cared for the welfare of the people or the country.
4. The teachings of Karl Marx also encouraged the people to raise a standard revolt.
5. The revolution of 1905 also proved a dress rehearsal of the revolution of 1917.
6. Last but not the least, the Tsar’s participation and defeat in the First World War proved the last straw to break the camel’s back.