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a. Khilafat Movement:

In the World War I Turkey had sided with Germany against Britain and her Allies. After the defeat of Turkey in the War the Indian Muslims appealed to Britain not to curb the liberty of the Sultan of Turkey, who was also the Caliph or religious leader of the entire Muslim world.

Despite the appeal Britain imposed stringent conditions on the Sultan by the Treaty of Serves. The treaty took away much of the prestige of the Caliph.

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The Muslim community of India thereafter started a movement in 1919 against the British government to pressurize Britain to restore the liberty and prestige of the Caliph. This came to be known as the Khilafat Movement.

The All India Khilafat Conference held in Delhi in November 1919 decided to withdraw all co-operations with the British government if their demands were not met.

The Muslim League, now under the leadership of the nationalists, gave full support to the National Congress and its agitation on political issues.

b. Its importance:

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The Khilafat Movement was clubbed with Non Co-operation Movement. For it was thought that an opportunity came for a Hindu-Muslim joint movement against the British government.

The movement had thoroughly roused the country but made little impression upon the British. The British government attached no importance to the demands of the Khilafatists.

Annoyed by the British attitude the Khilafat Conference at Karachi called upon the Muslim soldiers in the British Indian army to quit.

However, abrupt suspension of the Non Co-operation and Khilafat along with it created a different situation The Khilafatists came to be sharply divided. A large number of them lost faith in Mahatma, and turned to the government for help.

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