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Explain the meaning and notion of ‘Swaraj’ as perceived by the plantation workers. How did they respond to the call of ‘the Non – Cooperation movement’?

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1. For plantation workers in Assam, Swaraj meant the right to move freely in and out of the confined space in which they were enclosed, and it meant retaining a link with the village from which they had come. 

2.(i) Under the Inland Emigration Act of 1859, plantation workers were not permitted to leave the tea gardens without permission, and in fact they were rarely given such permission. 

2.(ii). When they heard of the Non-Cooperation Movement, thousands of workers defied the authorities, left the plantations, and headed home. 

2.(iii). They believed that Gandhi Raj was coming, and everyone would be given land in their own villages. 

2.(iv). They, however, never reached their destination. Stranded on the way by a railway and steamer strike, they were caught by the police and brutally beaten up.

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