100 years on, remembering the Hindu-German effort to end the British Raj

In April 1918 ended the US trial of Ghadar leaders and their German financiers who were trying to smuggle arms to South Asia. hen the Hindu-German conspiracy trial began in the US on November 20, 1917, American newspapers competed to describe the scenes in the San Francisco courtroom that – as their narratives went – was packed with “turbaned”, “glowering” and “excitable Hindus”. By the time it ended next year on April 24, the trial had lasted 155 days, and cost the US government $450,000. It proved expensive – at £2.5 million – for the British too, whose intelligence and other officials worked determinedly through the war years, from 1914 onward, to prove the existence of a conspiracy planned on neutral American soil to foment a revolution in British India.

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