Q. With reference to Birsa Munda and the Munda rebellion, consider the following statements:
1. The movement was initiated against the Chhota Nagpur Tenancy Act of 1908.
2. Birsa Munda was also known as Dharti abba.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

[A] 1 only

[B] 2 only

[C] Both 1 and 2

[D] Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: B
  • Statement 1 is incorrect: Munda rebellion was against the replacement of Khuntkari system with Zamindari. 
  • Statement 2 is correct 

About Munda Rebellion 

  • It was led by Birsa Munda. It was a revolt against the colonial masters and exploitative dikus(outsiders) and was aimed at establishing Munda Raj or Munda rule in this region. The revolt later came to be known as The Ulgulan or “the Great Tumult”. 
  • Reason for Munda Revolt: In 1874, the British replaced the Khuntkari system of Munda tribals with the zamindari system. The introduction of the zamindari system created the classes of zamindars (landlords) and ryots (tenants). It also intensified the forced labour (veth bigari) in the forested tribal areas and made tribals depend on money lenders for money. 
  • Impact of the Munda Revolt: The movement compelled the British to take cognisance of the plight and exploitation of tribals and bring in the Chhota Nagpur Tenancy Act of 1908 for their protection. This Act restricted the transfer of tribal land to non-tribals giving Adivasis a huge relief and became a landmark legislation for the protection of tribal rights.