Safety Valve theory: The INC was started under the official direction, guidance and advice of Lord Dufferin, the Viceroy, to provide a safe, mild, peaceful and constitutional outlet or safety valve for the rising discontent among the masses, which was inevitably leading towards a popular and violent revolution.
The safety valve theory is inadequate and misleading. INC represented the urge of the Indian educated class to set up a national organization to work for their political and economic development A number of organizations, had already been started by the Indians towards that end. Hume‘s presence in Congress was used to allay official suspicions. Even if the assumption of safety valve theory is considered, the organisation fail to achieve the desired objectives for the Britishers. This theory was also one of the extension of white man supremacy which says that Indian are incompetent to form a organisation of this character.