Modern History Simplified: Kuka Movement in Punjab (1840)

Kuka Movement in Punjab
  1. The Kuka Movement was founded in 1840 by Bhagat JawaharMal (also called Sian Saheb) in western Punjab.
  2. A major leader of the movement after him was Baba Ram Singh (Founder of Namdhari Sikh sect).
  3. Its basic tenets were abolition of caste and similar discriminations among Sikhs, discouraging the consumption of meat and alcohol and drugs, permission for intermarriages, widow remarriage, and encouraging women to step out of seclusion.
  4. After the British took Punjab, the movement got transformed from a religious purification campaign to a political campaign.
  5. On the political side, the Kukas wanted to remove the British and restore Sikh rule over Punjab; they advocated wearing hand-woven clothes and boycotting English laws and education and products.
  6. So, the concepts of Swadeshi and non-cooperation were propagated by the Kukas, much before they became part of the Indian national movement in the early twentieth century.
  7. The British suppressed the movement with severe repression.

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