Gandhi is Arrested by the British Government on Charges of Inciting Violence at Chauri Chaura
The Government seized the opportunity for which it was waiting.
On the evening of March 10, 1922, Gandhi was arrested in his ashram. The trial was held before Broomfield, District and Sessions Judge of Ahmedabad. The British judge behaved with great consideration, nodding respectfully to the accused in the dock before taking his seat. He acknowledged that Gandhi was in a different category from any person that he had ever tried or was likely to try. Gandhi made his task easy by pleading guilty. He was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment.
"Non-cooperation" enjoyed widespread appeal and success, increasing excitement and participation from all strata of Indian society. Yet, just as the movement reached its apex, it ended abruptly as a result of a violent clash in the town of Chauri Chaura, Uttar Pradesh, in February 1922. Fearing that the movement was about to take a turn towards violence, and convinced that this would be the undoing of all his work, Gandhi called off the campaign of mass civil disobedience. Gandhi was arrested on 10 March 1922, tried for sedition, and sentenced to six years imprisonment. He began his sentence on 18 March 1922. He was released in February 1924 for an appendicitis operation, having served only 2 years.
Without Gandhi's uniting personality, the Indian National Congress began to splinter during his years in prison, splitting into two factions, one led by Chitta Ranjan Das and Motilal Nehru favouring party participation in the legislatures, and the other led by Chakravarti Rajagopalachari and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, opposing this move. Furthermore, cooperation among Hindus and Muslims, which had been strong at the height of the non-violence campaign, was breaking down. Gandhi attempted to bridge these differences through many means, including a three-week fast in the autumn of 1924, but with limited success.
Gandhi's Life, Part Ten