First War of Independence 1857
This section is about The Revolt against British Rule, This was also known as The Great Uprising of 1857.
● These were local, scattered and isolated Hindus and Muslims.Besides their traditional differences they joined their hands together against the British Rulers.
● They were not very strong but they established a tradition of struggle against the foreign rule/British rule.
● Millions of peasants , artisans and soldiers participated.
● It shook the British government to its very foundation.
[This expansion caused resentment among the rulers of the nature states and the India People too.]
b) By Subsidiary Alliance
c) By Using the Doctrine of Lapse
d) On the Pretext of Alleged Misrule/Annexation of Awadh.
⑶ Treatment given to Nana Saheb
⑷ Absentee Sovereignty of the British
⑸ Unpopular Administration/Administrative failures.
2. Introduction of railways and telegraph / Apprehension about Modern Innovations
3. Policy of Racial Discrimination
4. Corruption in Administration
5. Oppression of the poor
6. Activities of Missionaries
7. Fears regarding Western Education
8. Tax on Religious Places
9. Law of Property
10. Indignities hurled (impelled with great force) at Indians.
2. India reduced to an Agricultural Colony of the British
3. Decay of Cottage Industries and Handicrafts
4. Drain of wealth
5. Economic Decline of Peasantry / Impoverishment of the cultivators
6. Inhuman Treatment of Indigo Cultivators
7. Grouping unemployment
8. Poverty and Famine
9. Decline of Landed Aristocracy
2. Bleak/Poor Prospects of Promotions
3. Deprivation of Allowances.
4. General Service Enlistment Act
5. Larger Proportion of Indians in the British Army
6. Faulty Distribution of Troops
7. Poor Performance of British Troops
8. Lower Salaries
9. The Immediate Cause- Introduction of the Enfield Rifle
To safeguard their economic and political interest the British waged many wars.
• In Anglo-Mysore Wars(1767 to1799), the East India Company annexed most of the territories of the Mysore State.
• After the Third Anglo-Maratha War(1817-18) , the British acquired the Peshwa’s entire dominions and Maratha territory of north and south Narmada river.
• In the Second Anglo-Sikh War(1849),they annexed Punjab after defeating the Sikhs.
• From 1823 to 1856 , they further conquered Sindh, territories of Assam, Arakan and Tenasserim and Regu in Myanmar.
→ Some Indian States were brought under British empire by following the Subsidiary Alliance which was introduced by Lord Wellesley under this system Indian Rulers —
• Agreed that they would not enter into any other alliance and would not wage any war, & surrender their foreign relations to the East India Company.
• Accepted a British Resident at their headquarters, they were not allowed to employ any European without consulting East India Company.
• Agreed to maintain British troops at their own cost.
• Virtually lost their independence.
→ States Under Subsidiary Alliance
• After the third Anglo-Maratha War – Maratha ruler Baji Rao II
• 1799 – Mysore ,1801 – Awadh, 1802 – Peshwa
1803 – Bhonsle,1804 – Scindhiya
→ Lord Dalhousie, the Governor -General of India annexed many states by using the Doctrine of Lapse.
★ And not his territory which would come under the company’s rule.
➨ Nawab Wazid Ali Shah was deposed on grounds that Awadh was not being managed well and Lord Dalhousie annexed Awadh to the Company’s dominions.
▶ The British seemed to have broken their promises made to the ruling chiefs.
▶ This caused resentment among those soldiers of the British Indian army who came from Awadh.
▶ Taluqdars or Zamindars were also not satisfied as British confiscated their estates.
▶ They had to pay higher land revenue and additional taxes on food, houses, ferries and justice.
▶ Thousands of nobles,officials and soldiers became jobless.
▶ It affected the financial position of the soldiers.
▶ They had to pay higher taxes on the land which their families had in Awadh.
• In 1856, Lord Canning mentioned that his successors would not be permitted to use the imperial titles “King” with their names and would be known as mere princes.
• This decision of the British hurt the feelings of the Muslims.
▶ So Lord Dalhousie refused to grant him pension.
▶ He was forced to live at Kanpur faraway from his place Poona. Which was very much resented in Maratha region.
▶ He had inherited wealth from the former Peshwa.
▶ He utilised this wealth in sending emissaries (person sent as diplomatic representative on a special mission) in a different parts of the country.
▶ He generated awareness among the Indians about the British Policies.
❖ It was not liked by the Indians
❖ The Earlier rulers like the Mughals conquered India and settled in India
❖ They spent the collected revenue from India in India only.
❖ In case Britain Indians felt, India’s wealth was being drained to England and not utilised for Indians welfare.
▶ The British official had no knowledge of the manners, customs and habits of the people.
➨ The British officials had great contempt for the Indians.
4. Corruption in Administration.
5. Oppression of the poor.
6. Activities of Missionaries.
7. Tax on Religious Places.
8. Law of Property.
9. Fears regarding Western / English Education.
► They thought that telegraph poles were erected to hang people who were against the British rule
► Some conservative (orthodox) Indian believed the higher castes and lower castes people were made to sit separately in train compartments.
► They thought it was introduced to defy their caste and religion which was not appreciated.
► They believed that they were superior to Indians and showed disrespect to them.
► They called muslims as cruel and unfaithful and ill-treated and insulted Indians.
‡ If an Indian was an horseback he had to come down and stand in a respectful manner until the European had passed him.
≽ The rich got away with crime but the common man was looted and tortured.
➨ If the cultivators were not able to pay arrears of rent , land revenue and interest on debt then they were flogged(beaten with whip),tortured and imprisoned.
➨ So ,growing poverty made the poor desperate and led them to join this movement in the hope of improvement.
∎ Even the company acted as a trustee of some Hindu temples.
∎ In the 19th century this attitude underwent a change which created a sense of alarm among Hindus and Muslims.
∎ They began to interfere with local religious beliefs they denounced, idol worship and called local beliefs as ignorance.
∎ The teaching Christian doctrine was made compulsory and the “Bible” was introduced in Christians as well as government institutions.
∎ Even prisoners in the jail were instructed in Christianity
∎ There was an increase in number and activities of the Christian missionaries.
∎ Which made Indian people to believe that these missionaries would convert them to Christianity.
• Previous Indian rulers exempted such lands from taxation.
• Dependent families of these lands believed that the British were trying to undermine the religions of India.
• It enabled a convert from Hinduism to other religions to inherit the property of his father.
• The Hindus regarded this as an incentive to give up one’s religious faith.
• In 1829, the Bengal government established an English class in Calcutta which was a Muslim institution.
• Later, English classes were introduced in Benaras Sanskrit college.
• Pandits and Maulvis did not appreciate the shifting emphasis from oriental learning to western education.
• They felt that it was attempt to discourage traditional Islamic and Hindu studies
• Indian people found that the purpose of western education was not to promote literature and sciences but encourage their children to become Christians.
1764, Battle of Buxar
The Battle of Buxar was fought on 23 October 1764 between the forces under the command of the British East India Company led by Hector Munro and the combined army of Mir Qasim, the Nawab of Bengal; Shuja-ud-Daula the Nawab of Awadh and the Mughal King Shah Alam II The battle fought at Buxar, then within the territory of Bengal, a town located on the bank of the Ganges river about 130 km west of Patna, was a decisive victory for the British East India Company.
1767 to 1799, Anglo Mysore War
1817-1818, 3rd Anglo Maratha War
1849 2nd Anglo Sikh war
The Second Anglo-Sikh War was a military conflict between the Sikh Empire and the British East India Company that took place in 1848 and 1849. It resulted in the fall of the Sikh Empire, and the annexation of the Punjab and what subsequently became the North-West Frontier Province, by the East India Company.