Conquest of India
Early Resistance to British Rule
Nationalism in India
Indian Freedom Struggle Under Gandhiji
Social Reforms in British India
Partition of India
Other Important Topics

27. All Round Table Conferences 1930-1932



  • The First Round Table Conference was held in London on Nov. 12, 1930 but the Congress did not participate in it. In March 1931, Mahatma Gandhi and Lord Irwin (Viceroy of India 1926-31) entered into a Pact, called Gandhi-Irwin Pact, by which the Congress called off the Civil Disobedience Movement and agreed to participate in the Round Table Conference in London. Mahatma Gandhi was nominated as the sole representative of the Congress.

The first session laid down the following main principles:-

i) The form of the Constitution would be an all India Federation embracing British Indian Provinces and those States which agreed to join the Federation.

ii) The responsibility of the Executive to the Legislature at the Centre, subject to certain reservations and safeguards for the period of transition.

iii) The government in Governors’ Provinces to be reconstituted on the basis of full responsibility.


The Second Conference was held in London on 7th of September, 1931 but nothing was finally decided, as the various communities of India could not come to an understanding regarding the distribution of seats on communal basis in the Provincial and Central Legislatures. The matter was left to the final arbitration of the British Prime Minister, Ramsay MacDonald. Mahatma Gandhi, immediately after his return from London, in the beginning revived the Civil Disobedience Movement. The Government suppressed the movement, and jailed Gandhiji, and many responsible Congress leaders.


The Third Conference was held in London on the 17th of November, 1932 to consider the reports of various sub-committees appointed from time to time. It ultimately led to the passage of the Govt. of India Act, 1935. Following the publication of the Communal Award, the third Session, or “the Pocket” R.T.C. met in London to discuss a fixed agenda in private. It was smaller and more informal than the previous ones. Congress did not participate as most of the leaders were in jail.

Also read:-Civil Disobedience