What were the differences between the extremists and moderates? Briefly describe how the extremists took the movement forward. (250 words)

What were the differences between the extremists and moderates? Briefly describe how the extremists took the movement forward.  (250 words)


  • Introduce with mentioning about moderates and extremist.
  • Write about the difference in the methods of their movement.
  • Also mention about response of masses.
  • Conclude accordingly.
Model Answer :

Moderates used soft means for freedom struggle through petitions, speeches etc. They laid the initial building block of preparation and awakening of people for freedom struggle (during second half of 19th century). Extremists, who took over the leadership of the national movement after the extremists, believed in mass based struggle. Leaders like LalaLajpat Rai, Tilak and BC Pal were in favour of  extremism.

The difference between moderates and extremists:

  1. Moderates demanded constitutional reform where as extremist favoured extra constitutional means like boycott and passive resistance with Swaraj as primary objective.
  2. The moderates were mainly inspired by western liberal thoughts and European history where as extremists were inspired by Indian history, heritage and Hindu traditions.
  3. Moderates believed in British political connection with India and expressed loyalty to the crown but the extremists considered Britishers as exploiters and consider loyalty to crown as unworthy.
  4. Moderates believed that movement should be limited to middle class intelengesia and felt that masses were not ready for large scale movement. Extremists had huge faith on masses and wanted them to sacrifice for freedom struggle.

Movement leadership of the extremists:

The movement laid by extremist during Bengal partition and Swadeshi during 1905-1908 was a leap forward in freedom struggle. Hitherto the untouched sections like student, women, rural population also participated. The passive resistance and non cooperation trend started because of their new approach. The movement was not confined to political sphere but encompassed art, literature, science and industry also.

Although the differences between moderates and extremists led to split of INC at Surat, they led the foundation for mass awakening and mass struggle in India which was visible during WW1 phase and Gandhian era of freedom struggle. Both groups justifies their approach in their relative era because extremist of today will be moderates of tomorrow was rightly analysed by Tilak.

Subjects : History and Culture

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s