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100 Years ago....

Rioting as Gandhi burns foreign cloth

Nov 17, 1921

The streets of Bombay were today lined with vast crowds, all cheering the Prince of Wales as he drove to Government House. Elsewhere in the city, however, there was serious rioting as Mr Gandhi, using the occasion to draw attention to his campaign against the import of foreign cloth, arranged a bonfire of cloth and clothes.

The mob gathered at the bonfire, turned violent, and wrecked and burnt tramcars, looted shops and stoned Europeans. A common but mistaken belief that the Prince's presence would prevent the use of firearms undoubtedly increased the size and ferocity of the mob.

After several policemen had been killed and wounded, the police opened fire on the rioters, and there were a number wounded. Troops have now been transferred to the area of the disturbances and the Viceroy has postponed his departure to deal with the crisis.

Article from "Chronicle of the 20th Century" ISBN 1 872031 80 3

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