Monday, 30 March 2015

Governor Generals of British India

Warren Hastings Plan 1772 – 1785 :
  •      Brought the Dual Govt, of Bengal to an end by the Regulating Act, 1773.
  •      Establishment  of Civil(Faujdari adalat) and Criminal(Diwani adalat) courts were established.
  •      Maintenance of records was made compulsory.
  •      The First Anglo – Maratha War (1776 – 82), which ended with the Treaty of Salbai (1782), and the Second Anglo– Mysore War (1780 – 84), which ended with the Treaty of Mangalore (1784), were fought during Hasting’s period.
  •      Founded the Asiatic Society of Bengal with William Jones in 1784. He wrote introduction to the first English translation of “The Gita” by Charles Wilkins.
  •      He was charged of misconduct brought against him for taking bribe. After a trial of 7 years, he was finally acquitted.

Lord Cornwallis India (1786 – 1793) :

  •   Did the Permanent Settlement of Bengal (also called Zamindary System).
  •   First person to codify laws. The code separated the revenue administration from the    administration of justice.
  •   Police Reforms : Each district was divided into 400 sq. miles and placed under a           police superintendent assisted by constables.
  •   The civil service was brought into existence.

Sir John Shore History (1793 – 1798)
  •   Bring reforms in the revenue administration .

  •   Sir John Shore always tried to avoid hostilities and some measures were taken to             ward off the wars.

Lord Wellesley in India (1798 – 1805) :

  • Adopted the policy of Subsidiary Alliance a system to keep the Indian rulers under control and to make the British the paramount power.

  •  He defeated the Mysore force under Tipu Sultan in the Fourth Anglo – Mysore War in 1799.

Subsidiary Alliance in India :
  •  The Subsidiary Alliance System was used by Weilesley to bring Indian Slates within the orbit the British political power.

Land Revenue System in India :

Permanent Settlement (The Zamindari System) :

  • Introduced in Bengal, Bihar, Orissa and districts of Banaras and Northern districts of Madras by Lord Cornwallis in 1793. John Shore planned this.
  • It declared Zamindars as the owners of the land. Hence, they could keep 1/11th of the revenue collected to themselves while the British got a fixed share of 10/11th of the revenue collected. The Zamindars were free, to fix the rent.
  •  Assured of their ownership, many Zamindars stayed in towns (absentee landlordism) and exploited their tenants.

Ryotwari System in India :

  • Introduced in Bombay, Madras and Assam. Lord Munro and Charles Reed recommended it.
  • In this, a direct settlement was made between the govt, and the ryot (cultivator).
  • The revenue was fixed for a period not exceeding 30 years, on the basis of the quality of the soil and the nature of the crop. It was based on the scientific rent theory of Ricardo.
  • The position of the cultivator became more secure but the rigid system of revenue collection often forced him into the clutches of the money – lender.

Mahalwari System in India :

  •  Modified version of Zamindari settlement introduced in the Ganges valley, NWFR parts of Central India and Punjab. 
  • Revenue settlement was to be made by village or estate with landlords. In Western UR a settlement was made with the village communities, which maintained a form of common ownership known as Bhaichara, or with Mahals, which were groups of villages.
  •  Revenue was periodically revised.
George Barlow (1805 – 1807)
  •          Sepoy mutiny at Vellore 1806.
  •          Slave trade abolished in the British Empire in 1807.

  •          Established the Fort William College in Calcutta in 1800.
  •          Opened Administrative Training College.
  •          In 1794 the Board of Trade was founded.
  •          Christian missionaries established a printing press at Serampore.

Lord Minto I Governor General of India (1807 – 1813) :
  •          Sent Mission of Malcom to Persia and the Elphinstone to Kabul.
  •          Importation of slaves into India was stopped.
  •          Concluded the treaty of Amritsar with Maharaja Ranjit Singh (1809).
  •          Charter Act of 1813 was passed.

Lord Hasting India (1813 – 1823) :

  •      The Anglo-Nepal War (1814 – 16) was fought during his reign which ended with the Treaty of Sagauli (1816).
  •     Third Anglo- Maratha War .Marathas were finally crushed. Baji Rao II was removed.
  •      Extermination of Pindaris
  •     Introduction of Ryotwari settlement in Madras by Thomas Munro.
  •     Mahalwari system of land revenue was made in North-West province by James Thomson.
  •     Subordinate Isolation policy towards Indian states.
  •     Terminated the priorities of Magistrates.

Lord Amherst (1823 – 1828)
  •         First Anglo-Burmese war. Treaty of Yaudaboo in 1826 by which British merchants were allowed to settle in the southern coast of Burma.
  •         Acquisition of territory of Malaya peninsula.Acquisition of Bharatpur.

Lord William Bentinck History (1828-1835) :
  •       Carried out the social reforms like Prohibition of Sari (1829) and elimination of thugs (1830).
  •       Made English the medium ofhighereducation inthe country (Afterthe recommendations of Macaulay).
  •       Suppressed female infanticide and child sacrifice.
  •       Charter Act of 1833 was passed; made him the first Governor General of India. Before him, the designation was Governor General of Bengal.

Sir Charles Mercalfe History (1835 – 1836) :
  •          Abolished all restrictions on vernacular press (called Liberator of the


Lord Auckland 1842 (1836 – 1842) :
  •          In 1838 Tripartite Treaty between Shah Shuja,Ranjit Singh and the          British.
  •          Deposition and deportation of the Raja of Satara.
  •          The most important event of his reign was the First Afghan War, which proved to be a disaster for the English.

Lord Ellenborough (1842 – 1844)
  •          Termination of Afghan war.
  •          Annexation of Sindh.Imposition of humiliating treaties on Sindh and Gwalior. 

Lord Hardinge I (1844 – 1848)
  •       War with Nepal (1812-1823) –Treaty of Sagauli in 1816.
  •       First Anglo- Sikh War. Treaty of Lahore. This extended the British territory to the lands between the Beas and the Sutlej.
  •      Prohibition on female infanticide and suppression of human sacrifice.

  •    In 1844 rebellion took place in Kolhapur. English education declared as essential qualification for public services.
  •      In 1845 Danish sold their territories to the British.
  •      In 1846 the rebellion of Khonds took place.

Lord Dalhousie Reforms (1848 – 1856) :
  •  Opened the first Indian Railway in 1853 (from Bombay to Thane).
  •  Laid out the telegraph lines in 1853 (First was from Calcutta to Agra).      
  •  Introduced the Doctrine of Lapse and captured Satara (1848), Jaipur and             Sambhalpur (1849), oudh(1851),Udaipur (1852),Jhansi (1853) and Nagpur (1854) through it.
  •  Established the postal system on the modern lines through the length and breadth of the country.
  •  Started the Public Works Department. Many bridges were constructed and the work on Grand Trunk Road was started. The harbors of Karachi, Bombay and Calcutta were also developed.
  •  Made Shimla the summer capital.

  •       Started Engineering College at Roorkee. 

  •       In 1854, “Wood’s Dispatch’ was passed, which provided for the properly articulated system of education from the primary school to the university.
  •       Encouraged science, forestry, commerce, mineralogy and industry.
  •       Due to Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar’s efforts, remarriage of widows was legalized by Widow Remarriage Act,


Lord Dalhousie Doctrine of Lapse :

The Doctrine of Lapse was an annexation policy devised by Lord Dalhousie.
According to the Doctrine, any princely state or territory under the direct influence (paramountcy) of the British East India Company, as a vassal state under the British Subsidiary System, would automatically be annexed if the ruler was either
“manifestly incompetent or died without a direct heir”.
The Doctrine is thought to be one of the major driving forces behind the Revolt
of 1857.

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