Advent of the Europeans, British East India Company and 2nd Phase of British East India Company

Advent of Europeans British Expansion In India Second Phase of British Expansion in India

• Before the beginning of the formal rule of the British in India, there was a background of Indo-European economic relationship.
• The commercial contacts between India and Europe were very old via the land route either through the Oxus valley or Syria or Egypt.
• But, the new sea route via the Cape of Good Hope was discovered by Vasco da Gama in 1498 and thereafter, many trading companies came to India and established their trading centres.
• The British East India Company was a Joint- Stock Company established in 1600, as the Company of Merchants of London Trading into the East Indies.
• During this time, other trading companies, established by the Portuguese, Dutch, French, and Danish were similarly expanding in the region.
• The British Company gained footing in India in 1612 after Mughal emperor Jahangir granted the rights to establish a factory (a trading post) in Surat to Sir Thomas Roe, a representative diplomat of Queen Elizabeth Ist of England.
• They entered India as traders at the outset but by the passage of time indulged in the politics of India and finally established their colonies.
• The commercial rivalry among the European powers led to political rivalry. Ultimately, the British succeeded in establishing their rule India.
The Dutch

• In March, 1602, by a charter of the Dutch parliament the Dutch East India Company was formed with powers to make wars, concluded treaties, acquire territories and build fortresses.
• The Dutch set up factories at Masulipatam (1605), Pulicat (1610), Surat (1616), Bimilipatam (1641), Karikal (1645), Chinsura (1653), Kasimbazar, Baranagore, Patna, Balasore, Negapatam (all in 1658) and Cochin (1663).
• In the 17th century, they supplanted the Portuguese as the most dominant power in European trade with the East, including India.
• Pulicat was their centre in India till 1690, after which Negapatam replaced it.
• In the middle of the 17th century (1654) the English began to emerge as a formidable colonial power.
• After 60-70 years of rivalry with the English, the Dutch power in India began to decline by the beginning of the 18th century.
• Their final collapse came with their defeat by the English in the battle of Bedera in 1759.
• One by one the Dutch lost their settlement to the English and their expulsion from their possessions in India by the British came in 1795.


• The Portuguese traveler Vasco da Gama reached the port of Calicut on 17 May 1498 and he was warmly received by Zamorin, the ruler of Calicut. He returned to Portugal in the next year.
• Pedro Alvarez Cabral arrived in 1500 and Vasco da Gama also made a second trip in 1502.
• They established trading stations at Calicut, Cannanore and Cochin.
• The first governor of the Portuguese in India was Francis de Almeida.
• Later in 1509 Albuquerque was made the governor of the Portuguese territories in India.
• In 1510, he captured Goa from the ruler of Bijapur. Thereafter, Goa became the capital of the Portuguese settlements in India.
• Albuquerque captured Malacca and Ceylon. He also built a fort at Calicut.
• Albuquerque encouraged his countrymen to marry Indian women.
• Albuquerque died in 1515 leaving the Portuguese as the strongest naval power in India.
• The successors of Albuquerque established Portuguese settlements at Daman, Salsette and Bombay on the west coast and at Santhome near Madras and Hugli in Bengal on the east coast.
• However, the Portuguese power declined in India by the end of the sixteenth century. They lost all their possessions in India except Goa, Daman and Diu in the next century.


• Denmark also established trade settlements in India and their settlement at Tranquebar was founded in 1620.
• Another important Danish settlement in India was Serampore in Bengal.
• Serampore was their headquarters in India.
• The Danes failed to strengthen themselves in India and they sold all their settlement in India to the British in 1845.


• The French East India Company was formed by Colbert under state patronage in 1664.
• The first French factory was established at Surat by Francois Caron in 1668. Later Maracara set up a factory at Masulipatam in 1669.
• A small village was acquired from the Muslim governor of Valikondapuram by Francois Martin and Bellanger de Lespinay in 1673. The village developed into Pondicherry and its first governor was Francois Martin.
• Also Chandernagore in Bengal was acquired from the Mughal governor in 1690.
• The French power in India declined between 1706 and 1720 which led to the reconstitution of the Company in 1720.
• The French power in India was revived under Lenoir and Dumas (governors) between 1720 and 1742.
• They occupied Mahe in the Malabar, Yanam in Coromandal (both in 1725) and Karikal in Tamil Nadu (1739).
• The arrival of Dupleix as French governor in India in 1742 saw the beginning of Anglo French conflict (Carnatic wars) resulting in their final defeat in India.


• The English East India Company (also known as the East India Trading Company, and, after the Treaty of Union, the British East India Company) was formed by a group of merchants known as ‘Merchant Adventures’ in 1599.
• The Company was granted an English Royal Charter, under the name Governor and Company of Merchants of London Trading into the East Indies, by Elizabeth I on 31 December 1600, making it the oldest among several similarly formed European East India Companies, the largest of which was the Dutch East India Company.
• In 1608, the company decided to open a factory (the name given to a trading depot) at Surat.
• The English ambassador Captain Hawkins arrived at Jahangir’s Court to seek permission for trade with India. But initially it was turned down due to Portuguese intrigue. This convinced the English of the need to overcome Portuguese influence at the Mughal Court if they were to obtain any concessions from the Imperial Government.
• The Company achieved a major victory over the Portuguese in the Battle of Swally near Surat in 1612, where two English naval ships under Captain Best defeated a Portuguese naval squadron.
• These victories led the Mughals to hope that in view of their naval weakness they could use the English to counter the Portuguese on the sea. Moreover, the Indian merchants would certainly benefit by competition among their foreign buyers.
• Captain Bust succeeded in getting a royal firman by Jahangir permitting the English to build a factory in Surat, Cambaya, Ahmedabad and Goa in 1613.
• The English were not satisfied with this concession and in 1615 their ambassador Sir Thomas Roe reached the Mughal Court. They also exerted pressure on the Mughal authorities by taking advantage of India’s naval weakness and harassing Indian traders and ship from the Red Sea and to Mecca.
• Thus, combining entreaties with threats, Roe succeeded in getting an Imperial farman to trade establish factories in all parts of the Mughal Empire.
• Roe’s success further angered the Portuguese and a fierce naval battle between the two countries began in 1620 which ended in English victory. Hostilities between the two came to an end in 1630.
• In 1662 the Portuguese gave the Island of Bombay to King Charles II of England as dowry for marrying a Portuguese Princess. Eventually, the Portuguese lost all their possessions in India except Goa, Daman and Diu.
• The Company, benefiting from the imperial patronage, soon expanded its commercial trading operations, eclipsing the Portuguese Estado da India, which had established bases in Goa, Chittagong and Bombay.
• The Company created trading posts in Surat (where a factory was built in 1612), Madras (1639), Bombay (1668), and Calcutta (1690).
• By 1647, the Company had 23 factories, each under the command of a factor or master merchant and governor if so chosen, and had 90 employees in India.
• The major factories became the walled forts of Fort William in Bengal, Fort St George in Madras, and the Bombay Castle.
• In 1634, the Mughal emperor extended his hospitality to the English traders to the region of Bengal, and in 1717 completely waived customs duties for the trade.
• The company’s mainstay businesses were by then in cotton, silk, indigo dye, saltpetre and tea.
• By a series of five acts around 1670, King Charles II provisioned it with the rights to autonomous territorial acquisitions, to mint money, to command fortresses and troops and form alliances, to make war and peace, and to exercise both civil and criminal jurisdiction over the acquired areas.


• With the arrival of the Europeans, particularly the Dutch and the English, there was a tremendous increase in the demand for Indian textiles for both the Asian markets and later the European market.
• The Asian markets for Indian textiles were developed over a long period. There markets were extensive and widespread and there was great diversity in their demand.
• There was a bilateral trade between the Coromandal and various parts of South East Asia such as Malacca, Java and the Spice Islands. In this trade, the Coromandal textiles acted as a link in a multilateral trade, embracing the Coromandal, South-East Asia, West Asia, and the Mediterranean. In this trade, Coromandal textiles were exchanged for South-East Asian spices which were in turn meant for the West Asian and Mediterranean markets.
• The European market for Indian textiles actually developed around the middle of the 17th century, and thereafter it grew by leaps and bounds.
• The intra-Asian trade witnessed severe competition among the various groups of merchants, such as the Portuguese, the Dutch, the English, the Danes, and the Indians consisting of both the Moors and the Chettis, whereas the European market for Indian textiles was dominated entirely by the European companies, particularly the English and the Dutch, with the Indian merchants acting essentially as middleman.
• European participation in the foreign trade of India showed a marked increase in the second half of the 17th century. This increase can be seen clearly in the sharp rise in their investments, a large part of which was in textiles meant for the Asian markets as well as the European market.
• Though initially European investment in Indian textiles considerably exceeded those ordered for the European market, by the end of the 17th century the situation was reversed with two-thirds of it going for the European market and only one-third for the Asian market.
• Among the various European companies competing for Indian textiles, the main rivalry was between the Dutch and the English, with the former initially having an edge but the latter gradually gaining supremacy by the turn of the 17th century and the beginning of the 18th century.
• With regard to the textile varieties that were exported from the Coromandal to South East Asia and other Asian markets, and later to Europe, the European records give a very long list.
• The various types, in order of importance, were long-cloth, salempors, moris (chintz), guinea-cloth, bethiles, allegias, sarassas, tapis, and the like.
• All these varieties were being exported even during earlier periods to several Asian markets such as the Moluccan Spice Islands, Java, Sumatra, Borneo, the Malay Peninsula, Siam, Tenasserim, Pegu, Arakan, Persia, Arabia, and the Red Sea ports.
• But the specialty of the period under study was the increased European orders which, though matching the already existing varieties, demanded measurements large than those in the Asian markets.
• Consequently, the Indian weavers had to change their methods and their looms to accommodate this European demand.
• Many of them did so quite profitably, but it necessitated long-term contracts and rendered spot orders improbable.
• The Indian economy, more specifically its textile trade and industry, during the second half of the 17th century, was a seller (i.e. producers) market. For, when the three European companies- English, Dutch and French were competing in the open market, making large orders from India, and these were supplemented by European private trade and Indian trade, the weavers had greater flexibility and large freedom of operation.
• The interchangeability of goods ordered by these various buyers, who were aiming at broadly the same export market, made it possible for weaver produced was bought up by one or the other eager customers.
• If, for instance, any cloth produced by the weaver was rejected by the companies, then the weaver could sell it to English private traders. This situation existed in many parts of the country where the three companies as well as the other buyers were in free competition.


• The English East India Company had very humble beginnings in India and Surat was the centre of its trade till 1687. Throughout this period the English remained petitioners before the Mughal authorities but always tried to combine trade and diplomacy with war and control of the territory where their factories were situated.
• In 1625 the Companys’ authorities at Surat made an attempt to fortify their factory but the chiefs of the English factory were immediately imprisoned by the local authorities of the Mughal Empire.
• Similarly, when the Company’s English rivals made piratical attacks on Mughal shipping, in relaliation the Mughal authorities imprisoned the President of the Company at Surat and members of his Council and released them only on payment of £18,000.
• Conditions in the South were more favourable for them as they did not have to face a strong Indian Government there. As Vijayanagar Kingdom had been overthrown in 1565 and its place taken by a number of petty and weak states, it was easy to appeal to their greed or overawe them with armed strength.
• The English opened their first factory in the South at Masulipatam in 1611, but they soon shifted the centre of their activity to Madras, the lease of which was granted by the local Raja in 1639.
• Madras was then a strip of coastal territory six miles long and one mile broad. Here the English built a small fort around their factory called Fort St. George.
• By the end of the 17th century the English Company was claiming full sovereignty over Madras and was ready to fight in, defence of the claim.
• In Bombay, the English found a large and easily defended port and because English trade was threatened at the time by the rising Maratha power. Bombay soon superseded Surat as the headquarters of the Company on the West Coast.
• In Eastern India, the English Company had opened its first factory in Orissa in 1633.
• In 1651 it was given permission to trade at Hugli in Bengal and soon opened factories at Patna, Balasore, and other places in Bengal and Bihar.
• Their easy success in trade and in establishing independent and fortified settlements at Madras and at Bombay, and the pre-occupation of Aurangzeb with the anti-Maratha campaigns led the English to abandon the role of humble petitioners.
• Hostilities between the English and the Mughal Emperor broke out in 1686 after the former had sacked Hugli and declared war on the Emperor. The war ended disastrously for them and they were driven out of their factories in Bengal. Their factories at Surat, Masulipatam, and Vizagapataoi were seized and their fort at Bombay besieged. The English once again became humble petitioners and pleaded for pardon.
• The Mughal authorities pardoned them on the pretext that foreign trade carried on by the Company benefited Indian artisans and merchants and thereby enriched the States treasury.
• Moreover, the English, though weak on land, were, because of their naval supremacy, capable of completely ruining Indian trade to Iran, West Asia, Northern and Eastern Africa and East Asia.
• Aurangzeb therefore permitted them to resume trade on payment of Rs. 150,000 as compensation.
• In 1691 the Company was granted exemption from the payment of custom duties in Bengal in return for Rs. 3,000 a year.
• In 1698, the Company acquired the zamindari of the three villages Sutanati, Kalikata, and Govindpur where it built Fort William around its factory.
• In 1717 the Company secured from Emperor Farrukh Siyar a farman confirming the privileges granted in 1691 and extending them to Gujarat and the Deccan.
• During the first half of the 18th century Bengal was ruled by strong Nawabs such as Murshid Quli Khan and Alivardi Khan. They exercised strict control over the English traders and prevented them from misusing their privileges. Nor did they allowed them to strengthen fortifications at Calcutta or to rule the city independently. Here the East India Company remained a mere zamindar of the Nawab.
• Even though the political ambitions of the Company were frustrated, its commercial affairs flourished. Its imports from India into England increased from 1708 to 1740. This increase was recorded in spite of the fact that the English Government forbade the use of Indian cotton and silk textiles in England in order to protect the English textile industry and to prevent export of silver from England to India.
• Thus at a time when the English were pleading for free trade in India they were restricting freedom of trade in their own country and denying access to Indian manufactures.
• Madras, Bombay, and Calcutta contained fortified English settlements; they also had immediate access to the sea where English naval power remained far superior to that of the Indians.
• In case of conflict with any Indian authority, the English could always escape from these cities to the sea. And when a suitable opportunity arose for them to take advantage of the political disorders in the country, they could use these strategic cities as spring-boards for the conquest of India.
• British settlements in these three cities became the nuclei of flourishing cities. Large numbers of Indian merchants and bankers were attracted to these cities. This was due partly to the new commercial opportunities available in these cities and partly to the unsettled conditions and insecurity outside them, caused by the break-up of the Mughal Empire.


• The prosperity that the officers of the company enjoyed allowed them to return to Britain and establish sprawling estates and businesses, and to obtain political power. The Company developed a lobby in the English parliament.
• Under pressure from ambitious tradesmen and former associates of the Company (pejoratively termed Interlopers by the Company), who wanted to establish private trading firms in India, a deregulating act was passed in 1694. This allowed any English firm to trade with India, unless specifically prohibited by act of parliament, thereby annulling the charter that had been in force for almost 100 years.
• By an act passed in 1698, a new “parallel” East India Company (officially titled the English Company Trading to the East Indies) was floated under a state-backed indemnity of £2 million. The powerful stockholders of the old company quickly subscribed a sum of £315,000 in the new concern, and dominated the new body.
• The two companies wrestled with each other for some time, both in England and in India, for a dominant share of the trade. It quickly became evident that, in practice, the original Company faced scarcely any measurable competition.
• The companies merged in 1708, by a tripartite indenture involving both companies and the state. Under this arrangement, the merged company lent to the Treasury a sum of £3,200,000, in return for exclusive privileges for the next three years, after which the situation was to be reviewed. The amalgamated company became the United Company of Merchants of England Trading to the East Indies.
• In the following decades there was a constant see-saw battle between the Company lobby and the Parliament.
• The Company sought a permanent establishment, while the Parliament was not willing to grant greater autonomy and so relinquish the opportunity to exploit the Company’s profits.
• In 1712, another act renewed the status of the Company. By 1720, 15% of British imports were from India, almost all passing through the Company, which reasserted the influence of the Company lobby. The license was prolonged till 1766 by yet another act in 1730.


• During the short period of eight years (1757 to 1765) three nawabs, Siraj-ud- Daula, Mir Jafar and Mir Qasim ruled over Bengal but they failed to uphold the sovereignty of the nawab and ultimately the reign of control passed into the hands of the British.
• Bengal was the most fertile and the richest province of India and its industries and commerce were well developed.
• In the beginning, the East India Company and its servants had highly profitable trading interests in the province.
• The Company secured valuable privileges in 1717 under a royal farman by the Mughal Emperor, which had granted the Company the freedom to export and import their goods in Bengal without paying taxes and the right to issue passes or dastaks for the movement of such goods.
• The Company’s servants were also permitted to trade but were not covered by this farman. They were required to pay the same taxes as Indian merchants.
• This farman was a perpetual source of conflict between the Company and the Nawabs of Bengal. First it meant loss of revenue to the Bengal Government. Secondly, the power to issue dastaks for the Company’s goods was misused by its servants to evade taxes on their private trade.
• All the Nawabs of Bengal, from Murshid Quli Khan to Alivardi Khan, had objected to the English interpretation of the farman of 1717. They compelled the Company to pay lump sums to their treasury, and firmly suppressed the misuse of dastaks.
• The Company had been compelled to accept the authority of the Nawabs in the matter, but its servants had taken every opportunity to evade and defy this authority.
• By the time Siraj-ud-Daula succeeded Alivardi Khan as nawab of Bengal in 1756 trade privileges and their misuse by the Company and its officers had already become an issue of conflict.
• Other factors like the repeated defiance of the nawab’s authority along with sheltering the offenders of the nawab were the acts on the part of the English Company which provoked the nawab.
• The Company officials also suspected that nawab was going to have an alliance with the French in Bengal.
• The breaking point came when, without taking the Nawab’s permission, the Company began to fortify Calcutta in expectation of the coming struggle with the French, who were stationed at this time at Chandernagore.
• Siraj-ud-Daula’s prevented the English from fortifying Fort William. However the English refused to stop the new fortification which prompted the Nawab to attack their factory at Casim Bazar.
• The Nawab captured Fort William, taking 146 Englishmen prisoners. Holed up in a very small room 123 died on 20th June, 1756 out of suffocation and only 23 survived. English historians describe this incident as the Black Hole Tragedy.
• This incident instigated the English at Chennai to send a relieving force under Robert Clive alongwith Admiral Watson to Bengal.
• The British retaliation started with hatching a conspiracy against the nawab in alliance with his Mir Bakshi Mir Jafar, Manik Chand, the Officer-in-Charge of Calcutta, Amichand, a rich merchant, Jagat Seth, the biggest banker of Bengal, and Khadim Khan, who commanded a large number of the Nawab’s troops and Rai Durlabh.
• Clive marched towards Plassey on 23rd June, 1757; which was near the Nawab’s capital of Murshidabad.
• As agreed earlier, Mir Jafar, the Commander-in-chief of Siraj-ud-daula did not take up arms against the English army and on the other hand the Nawab’s soldiers fled from the battlefield.
• Later the Nawab was killed by, Mir Jafar’s son Miran.
• Mir Madan and Mohan Lal, who were loyal to the Nawab fought bravely but were killed due to treachery of Mir Jafar and Rai Durlabh.
• English victory in the battle of Plassey (23 June, 1757) was pre-decided. It was not the superiority of the military power but the conspiracy that helped the English in winning the battle.
• Mir Jafar, the commander-in-chief of the Nawab was awarded the Nawabship by Clive for his support to the English.
• Mir Jafar responded to this favour by paying a sum of Rs. One Crore and Seventy Seven lakhs to the Company and large sums to the Company officers as bribe.
• But Mir Jafar could not support the ever increasing demands of the English who were also suspicious about his collaboration with the Dutch Trading Company.
• Mir Jafar was deposed in 1760 and Mir Qasim was placed on the throne by the British. The new Nawab assigned English the district of Burdawan, Midnapore and Chittagong for the expenses of the British army which was to help him.
• This alliance was of great help to the British in their campaign against the French in 1760-1761; the money paid by Mir Qasim helped the Calcutta Council to finance their war in South.
• The Nawab succeeded in establishing a better system of administration. But he came into conflict with the British in Bengal on the question of a privilege, i.e., duty free private trade of the Company.
• Mir Qasim’s proposed plan about equal trade duties for British and Indian traders was turned down by the British Council at Calcutta.
• Mir Qasim, in the circumstances, remitted all duties on Indians and the British alike for two years. This measure deprived the British private traders of the privileged position they had created for themselves, they could not compete with Indian traders on equal terms.
• The Nawab’s attempts to reorganize the army and shifting of capital from Murshidabad to Monghyr were also taken as unforgivable offences by the Company.
• The war broke out between Mir Kasim and the Company in 1763. Mir Qasim escaped to Oudh to organise a confederacy with Shuja-ud-daula, the Nawab of Oudh and the Mughal Emperor Shah Alam II in a final bid to oust the English from Bengal.
• The combined armies of the three powers fought the battle of Buxar with English army commanded by Major Munro on October 22, 1764.
• With a decisive victory at Buxar, the British army overran Awadh.
• The Nawab of Awadh fled to the Rohilla country, but Shah Alam II came to terms with the British.
• Lord Clive, then British Governor in Calcutta, also concluded treaty of Allahabad with the Shuja-ud-Daula, Nawab of Awadh, who was to pay fifty lakhs of rupees for the expenses of the war and was given back his dominions.
• He entered into defensive alliance with the Company. Awadh became for the British a buffer state.
• The British gave emperor Shah Alam II possession of Kara and Allahabad, while he granted them the Diwani of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa in return for a regular annual payment of twenty-six lakhs of rupees.
• The Battle of Buxar made the English virtually the masters of Bengal as it also proved their military superiority and unchallenged power.
• As a result of his success in Bengal, Robert Clive was appointed the first Governor General of Bengal and he consolidated the British power both in Bengal and in the Deccan.
• The Company acquired Diwani functions from Emperor Shah Alam II (12th August 1765) and Nizamat functions from Subedar of Bengal.
• For the exercise of Diwani functions, the company appointed two Deputy Diwans, Mohammad Reza Khan for Bengal and Raja Shitab Roy for Bihar. Mohammad Reza Khan acted as deputy Nizam.
• This arrangement was known as Dual Government wherein the administration of Bengal was carried out by two heads with the Nawab of Bengal being the nominal head and the Company, as the Diwan controlled the revenue as well as police and judicial powers.


• In the beginning of the eighteenth century, the English and the French were competing with each other to establish their supremacy in India.
• Both of them used the political turmoil prevalent in India as a result of the decline of the Mughal Empire in their favour and indulged in internal politics.
• The Anglo-French rivalry in India was manifest in the Carnatic region and in Bengal.

First Carnatic War (1746-1748)

• The downfall of the Mughal Empire led to the independence of Deccan under Nizam-ul-Mulk. The Carnatic region also formed part of the Nizam’s dominion.
• The ruler of the Carnatic accepted the suzerainty of the Nizam.
• In 1740, the Austrian War of Succession broke out in Europe. In that war England and France were in the opposite camps. They came into conflict in India also.
• The French governor of Pondicherry, Dupleix opened attack on the English in 1746 and thus began the First Carnatic War (1746-1748).
• The English sought help from the Nawab of Carnatic, Anwar Uddin. But the French concluded a treaty with his rival Chanda Sahib.
• The English army crushed a defeat on the French in the Battle of Adyar, near Madras.
• In the meantime, the Treaty of Aix-la-Chappelle was concluded in 1748 to end the Austrian Succession War. Thus the First Carnatic War came to an end.

Second Carnatic War (1749-1754)

• But the English and French continued to take opposite sides in the internal politics of India which resulted in the Second Carnatic War (1749-1754).
• Dupleix supported the cause of Muzafar Jang, who wanted to become the Nizam of Hyderabad and Chanda Sahib, an aspirant for the throne of Arcot.
• The troops of these three defeated Anwar Uddin, who was with the British in the First Carnatic War, and killed him in the Battle of Ambur in 1749.
• After this victory, Muzafar Jung became the Nizam and Chanda Sahib the Nawab of Arcot.
• Muhammad Ali, son of Anwar Uddin escaped to Tiruchirappalli. The English sent troops in support of him.
• In the meantime, the British commander Robert Clive captured Arcot. He also inflicted a severe defeat on the French at Kaveripakkam.
• Chanda Sahib was captured and beheaded in Tanjore. Meanwhile Dupleix was replaced by Godeheu as the French governor.
• The war came to an end by the Treaty of Pondicherry in 1754.

Third Carnatic War (1758-1763)

• The outbreak of the Seven Years War (1756-1763) in Europe led to the Third Carnatic War (1758-1763). Count de Lally was the commander of the French troops.
• The British General Sir Eyre Coote defeated him at Wandiwash in 1760.
• In 1761, Pondicherry was captured and destroyed by the British troops.
• The Seven Years War came to an end by the Treaty of Paris in 1763 and with it the third Carnatic War also ended.
• The French agreed to confine its activities in Pondicherry, Karaikkal, Mahe and Yenam.
• Thus the Anglo-French rivalry came to a close with British success and French failure.

Causes for the French failure

• The English were commercially and as a naval power were superior to French.
• There was lack of support to the French’s from their government and there was difference of opinion between the French Generals.
• French had support only in the Deccan but the English had a strong base in Bengal.
• English had three important ports – Calcutta, Bombay and Madras but French had only Pondicherry.
• England’s victory in the European wars decided the destiny of the French in India.


• Hyder Ali strengthened his army by including French soldiers into his service.
• In 1755, established modern arsenal in Dindigul with French help.
• He extended his territories by conquering many areas in South India including Bidnur, Sunda, Sera, Canara, and Malabar to gain access to Indian Ocean.
• In 1766 Mysore began to be drawn into territorial and diplomatic disputes between the Nizam of Hyderabad and the British East India Company, which had by then become the dominant European colonial power on the Indian east coast.

First Mysore War (1767-1769)

• The first Anglo-Mysore war started with attack of Marathas on Mysore in 1766, but Hyder Ali made peace with Marathas paying them 35 lakh Rupees.
• After Marathas returned, Nizam attacked Mysore with the assistance of British. But even before the war could be concluded, the Nizam changed the side and came towards Hyder Ali.
• The English forces could not retaliate and retreated to Trichinopoly under Col. Smith.
• Later Col. Wood joined the British army and amid confusion, Hyder Ali retreated from the battle. Now the British threatened to attack Hyderabad.
• This forced the Nizam to sign a treaty in 1768. As per the terms of this treaty the Nizam agreed to abide by the treaty signed with British in context with the Northern Circars.
• Hyder Ali was regarded as usurper and was refused to be acknowledge as ruler of Mysore, Nizam agreed to help the British to punish Hyder Ali. The important aspect of this treaty was that Nizam agreed to give the British Diwani Rights of Mysore when Hyder Ali was ousted and Mysore is won by him.
• Hyder Ali was defeated at Changam and Tiruvannamalai in 1767. At the same time Tipu Sultan, son of Hyder Ali advanced towards Madras and the English were forced to enter into an agreement.
• The result was the Treaty of Madras in April 1769 and it maintained the status quo. As per the Treaty of Madras: Both the Parties returned the areas won by each other. The District of Arcot was given to Nawab of Arcot British & Hyder Ali promised that they would support each other if there is any foreign invasion.

Second Mysore War (1780-84)

• Hyder Ali in the impression that as per the terms of this treaty, British would come to help in if there is a conflict with the Marathas.
• He started demanding tributes from the smaller states on the border of Maratha and Mysore.
• The Marathas responded this in 1770 with a force of over 30 thousand.
• Hyder Ali requested the British to help, but British did not turned up.
• The result was that all the territories of Hyder were confiscated by the Marathas.
• Hyder again begged the British for the help, but the British placed some conditions which were not acceptable to him. The result was that Hyder requested for peace with Marathas.
• There was an outbreak of hostilities between the English and the French (an ally of Haider) during the American War of Independence.
• Haider Ali formed a grand alliance with the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Marathas against the British in 1779.
• When Mahe, a French possession in the dominion of Hyder Ali was attacked by the English, he declared war on the English in 1780.
• Hyder Ali defeated Colonel Braithowaite in Arcot and made the English surrender and occupied almost the whole of Carnatic.
• Later,the English under Sir Eyre Coote, defeated Hyder Ali at Porto Novo in 1781.
• In the meantime Hyder Ali died in 1782. After his death his son Tipu Sultan continued the war with the British for two more years.
• The war came to an end with the Treaty of Mangalore signed in 1784. Both sides agreed to exchange the captured territories and war prisoners and thus the war ended up without any concrete results.
Third Mysore War (1790-92)
• The Treaty of Mangalore (1784) exhibited the military strength of Mysore, exposed English weaknesses and increased Tipu’s strength. Further, Tipu strengthened his position by undertaking various internal reforms.
• All above mentioned factors created worries to the British, the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Marathas.
• Moreover, Tipu made attempts to seek the help of France and Turkey by sending envoys to those countries. He also expanded his territories at the cost of his neighbours, particularly the Raja of Travancore, who was an ally of the British.
• In 1789, the British concluded a tripartite alliance with the Nizam and the Marathas against Tipu.
• Lord Cornwallis who had been made the Governor General of Bengal and the Commander-in-Chief of the English army then declared a war on Tipu in 1790.
• Cornwallis himself assumed command of the war in December 1790.
• Cornwallis captured Bangalore in March 1791, but Tipu’s brilliant strategies prolonged the war and he was forced to retreat to Mangalore due to lack of provisions.
• In the mean time aid from the Marathas helped Cornwallis to resume his campaign attack against Srirangapattinam again. Swiftly the English forces occupied the hill forts near Srirangapattinam and seized it in February 1792.
• Tipu Sultan concluded the Treaty of Srirangapattinam with the British. As per treaty Tipu had to give up half of his dominions. He had to pay a war indemnity of three crore rupees and surrender two of his sons as hostages to the English.
• The British secured a large territory on the Malabar Coast. In addition they obtained the Baramahal district and Dindugal.
Fourth Mysore War (1799)
• The Treaty of Srirangapattinam failed to bring peace between Tipu Sultan and the British. Tipu Sultan sent emissaries to Kabul, Constantinople, Arabia and France to get their support.
• At this juncture that Wellesley tried to revive the Triple Alliance of 1790 with the Marathas. Though his proposal was not accepted by the Marathas, they promised to remain neutral.
• However, a Subsidiary Alliance with the Nizam was concluded by the British and as a consequence, the French force at Hyderabad was disbanded.
• Wellesley set out to persuade Tipu to accept a pact of subsidiary alliance and wrote letters requesting the Tipu to dismiss the French, to receive an English envoy, and to make terms with the Company and its allies.
• Tipu refused the proposal and in response the the British declared war on him once again in 1799.
• The war was short and decisive. The Bombay army under General Stuart invaded Mysore from the west. The Madras army, which was led by the Governor-General’s brother, Arthur Wellesley, forced Tipu to retreat to his capital Srirangapattinam.
• Tipu Sultan died in battle while his family was deported first to Vellore and later to Calcutta.
• A five year old boy, Krishnaraja III, a descendant of the dethroned Hindu Raja, was enthroned at Mysore.
• Purnaiya, the previous minister, became Diwan.
• The remaining parts of the kingdom were divided between the British and the Nizam. The whole of Kanara, Wynad, Coimbatore, Dharmapuri and Srirangapattinam were retained by the British whereas the Nizam was given the areas around Gooty and a part of Chittoor and Chitaldurg districts.
• A British Resident was stationed at Mysore.
Anglo Maratha Wars
• The third Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao was unable to bear the shock of the defeat of the Marathas in the Third Battle of Panipat and died on June 23, 1761.
• He was succeeded by his son Madhav Rao who kept in check the ambition of his brother Raghunath Rao, maintained unity among the Maratha chiefs and nobles and very soon recovered the power and prestige of the Marathas which they had lost in the Third Battle of Panipat.
• The English became conscious of the growing power of the Marathas and got the opportunity to crush their re-establishment soon after the death of Madhav Rao in 1772.
• The internal conflict among the Marathas was best utilized by the British in their expansionist policy
First Maratha War (1775-1782)
• The primary cause of the first Maratha war was the interference of the English in the internal affairs of the Marathas.
• After the death of fourth Peshwa Madhav Rao in 1772 internal dissensions among Marathas left them weakened.
• His younger brother, Peshwa Narayan Rao succumbed to the intrigues of his ambitious uncle Raghunath Rao, another claimant for the post of Peshwa.
• Raghunath Rao was opposed by a strong party at Poona under Nana Phadnavis who proclaimed Narayan Rao’s posthumous son as Peshwa.
• The British authorities in Bombay concluded the Treaty of Surat with Raghunatha Rao in March 1775. Rahunatha Rao promised to cede Bassein and Salsette to the British but later when he was unwilling to fulfill his promise, the British captured them.
• This action of the Bombay Government was not approved by Warren Hastings.
• In 1776, Warren Hastings sent Colonel Upton to settle the issue. He cancelled the Treaty of Surat and concluded the Treaty of Purander with Nana Fadnavis, another Maratha leader.
• According to this treaty Madhava Rao II was accepted as the new Peshwa and the British retained Salsette along with a heavy war indemnity.
• However, the Home authorities rejected the Treaty of Purander. Warren Hastings also considered the Treaty of Purandar as a ‘scrap of paper’ and sanctioned operations against the Marathas.
• In the meantime, the British force sent by the Bombay Government was defeated by the Marathas.
• In 1781, Warren Hastings dispatched British troops under the command of Captain Popham. He defeated the Maratha chief, Mahadaji Scindia, in a number of small battles and captured Gwalior.
• The Treaty of Salbai was signed between Warren Hastings and Majadji Scinida in 1782. Under this treaty Salsette and Bassein were given to the British and Raghunath Rao was pensioned off.
• The treaty established the British influence on Indian politics. It provided the British twenty years of peace with the Marathas.
• The Treaty also enabled the British to exert pressure on Mysore with the help of the Marathas in recovering their territories from Haider Ali.
• Thus, the British, on the one hand, saved themselves from the combined opposition of Indian powers and on the other, succeeded in dividing the Indian powers.
Second Maratha War (1803-1805)
• The only power that remained outside the purview of the subsidiary system was the Marathas.
• Nana Fadnavis provided the leadership to the Marathas. He was responsible for the preservation of independence of his country from the onslaught of the British.
• By extending a helping hand to Cornwallis against Tipu he was able to acquire a large slice of territory as the share of the Marathas from the kingdom of Mysore.
• After the death of Nana Fadnavis in 1800 the infighting among the Maratha leaders proved to be self-destructive.
• Jaswant Rao Holkar and Daulat Rao Scindia fought against each other. The Peshwa Baji Rao II supported Scindia against Holkar. Holkar marched against the Peshwa and defeated the combined forces of Scindia and the Peshwa.
• Peshwa Baji Rao II fled to Bassein where he signed the Treaty of Bassein with the British in 1802. It was a subsidiary treaty and the Peshwa was recognized as the head of the Maratha kingdom. Treaty of Bassein is regarded as a very important step towards the establishment of the English dominance over India.
• The main provisions of Treaty of Bassein were the recognition of Peshwa’s claim in Poona, acceptance of Subsidiary Alliance by Baji Rao II and relinquishing of all rights to Surat by Baji Rao to the British.
• For Marathas, Treaty of Bassein was nothing short of surrender of national honour. Holkar and Scindia stopped fighting. Scindia and Bhonsle combined but Holkar and Gaikwad remained aloof.
• The British army’s led by Arthur Wellesley defeated the combined armies of Scindhia and Bhonsle at Assaye in September 1803, and at Aragon in November 1803.
• In North, Lord Lake routed Scindia’s army at Laswari and occupied Aligarh, Delhi and Agra.
• Both Scindia and Bhosle accepted the sovereignty of the English and entered into the Subsidiary Alliance by concluding the Treaty of Sarji-i-Arjangaon and the Treaty of Deogaon respectively.
• Holkar alone was left in the field who still avoided their supremacy. Wellesley turned his attention towards Holkar, but Yeshwant Rao Holkar proved more than a match for the British.
• Wellesley was called back from India and Sir George Barlow concluded with Holkar the treaty of Rajpurghat (1805) whereby the Maratha Chief gave up all claims to places North of Chambal, Bundelkhand and over Peshwa and other allies of the Company while the latter got back greater part of his territories.
Suppression of the Pindaris
• The first reference about the Pindaris is during the Mughal invasion of Maharashtra.
• Pindaris did not belong to any particular caste or creed. They used to serve the army without any payment but instead were allowed to plunder.
• During the time of Baji Rao I, they were irregular horsemen attached to the Maratha army. It is worth mentioning that they never helped the British.
• They were mostly active in the areas of Rajputana and the Central Provinces and subsisted on plunder.
• Their leaders belonged to both the Hindu as well as the Muslim communities. Chief amongst them were Wasil Muhammad, Chitu and Karim Khan.
• In 1812, the Pindaris plundered the districts of Mirzapur and Shahabad and in 1815 they raided the Nizam’s dominions.
• In 1816, they plundered the Northern Circars.
• Lord Warren Hastings himself took command of the force from the north while Sir Thomas Hislop commanded the force from the south against the Pindaris.
• By 1818, the Pindaris were completely suppressed and all their bands disintegrated.
• Karim Khan was given a small estate in the Gorakhpur district of the United Provinces.
• Wasil Muhammad took refuge in the Scindia’s camp but the latter handed him over to the British.
• Wasil committed suicide in captivity and Chitu escaped to the forest, where a tiger killed him. Thus, by 1824, the menace of the Pindaris came to an end.
Third Maratha War (1817-1819)
• Final phase of struggle began with coming of Lord Hastings as Governor General in 1813.
• He resumed the aggressive policy abondened in 1805. Hastings action against Pindaris transgressed the sovereignty of Maratha Chiefs and two parties were drawn into war.
• Hastings forced humiliating treaties on the Raja of Nagpur (27th May 1816) on Peshwa (13th June 1817) and Scindhia (5th Nov 1817).
• Greatly annoyed by the humiliating treaty, the Peshwa made a last bid to throw off the British yoke in course of the third Maratha War and attacked British Residency at Poona in November 1817. He was defeated at Kirkee.
• Similarly, the Bhonsle chief, Appa Sahib also refused to abide by the Treaty of Nagpur, which he had signed with the British on 17 May 1816. According to this treaty, Nagpur came under the control of the Company.
• Appa Sahib fought with the British in the Battle of Sitabuldi in November 1817, but was defeated.
• The Peshwa turned to Holkar for help, but Holkar too was defeated by the British on 21 December 1817 at Baroda.
• Therefore, by December 1817 the dream of a mighty Maratha Confederacy was finally shattered.
The Subsidiary Alliance System
• The Indian rulers were persuaded by Wellesley to sign a friendly treaty with the British according to which they would have to follow certain conditions:
– Any Indian ruler who entered into the subsidiary alliance with the British has to maintain a contingent of British troops in his territory which was commanded by a British officer.
– The Indian state was called ‘the protected state’ and the British hereinafter were referred to as ‘the paramount power’.
– It was the duty of the British to safeguard that state from external aggression and to help its ruler maintain internal peace and in lieu of this the protected state should give some money or give part of its territory to the British to support the subsidiary force.
– The protected state has to cut off its connection with European powers other than the English and with the French in particular.
– The state was forbidden to have any political contact even with other Indian powers without the permission of the British.
– A British Resident has to be stationed at the court of protected state.
– The protected state has to disband his own army and was not permitted to employ Europeans in his service without the sanction of the paramount power.
– The paramount power should not interfere in the internal affairs of the protected state.
• Wellesley’s Subsidiary System is regarded as one of the masterstrokes of British imperialism.
• It increased the military strength of the Company in India at the expense of the protected states.
• The territories of the Company were free from the ravages of war thereby establishing the stability of the British power in India.
• The position of the British was strengthened against its Indian and non-Indian enemies.
• Under the system, expansion of British power became easy.
• Thus Wellesley’s diplomacy made the British the paramount power in India.
• The immediate effect of the establishment of subsidiary forces was the introduction of anarchy because of the unemployment of thousands of soldiers sent away by the Indian princes.
• The freebooting activities of disbanded soldiers were felt much in central India where the menace of Pindaris affected the people.
• Initially, Wellesley compelled the friendly rulers to accept this alliance and the first victim of the policy of subsidiary alliance of Wellesley was the Nizam of Hyderabad.
• Wellesley neutralized the Nizam by getting him to sign the subsidiary alliance to replace his French detachments. He also forbade Nizam to correspond with the Marathas without British consent.
• The Nawab of Oudh entered into this arrangement in 1801 (Treaty of Lucknow) and ceded half of Awadh to the British East India Company and also agreed to disband his troops in favor of a hugely expensive, British-run army. After this, the British were able to use Oudh’s vast treasuries, repeatedly digging into them for loans at reduced rates. They also got revenues from running Oudh’s armed forces. Last, but not least, the subsidiary alliance made Oudh a “buffer state”, which gave strategic advantage to the British.
• Wellesley assumed the administration of Tanjore, Surat and the Karnatak by concluding treaties with the respective rulers of these states also.

2nd Phase of British East India Company

• Lord William Bentinck was the first Governor-General to visualise a Russian threat to India and because of this, he was eager to negotiate friendly relations both with the rulers of Punjab, Maharajah Ranjit Singh and also with the Amirs of Sind.
• His earnest desire was that Afghanistan should be made a buffer state between India and any possible invader.
• As an initial measure, an exchange of gifts took place between Lahore, the capital of Punjab and Calcutta, made the seat of Governor-General.
• It was then followed by the meeting of Bentinck and Ranjit Singh on 25 October, 1831 at Rupar on the bank of the river Sutlej amidst show and splendor.
• The Governor-General was successful in winning the friendship of Ranjit Singh and the Indus Navigation Treaty was concluded between them.
• This treaty opened up the Sutlej for navigation. In addition, a commercial treaty was negotiated with Ranjit Singh. A similar treaty was also concluded with the Amirs of Sind.


• The conquest of Sindh occurred as a result of the growing Anglo-Russian rivalry in Europe and Asia and the consequent British fears that Russia might attack India through Afghanistan or Persia.
• To counter Russia, the British Government decided to increase its influence in Afghanistan and Persia.
• It further felt that this policy could be successfully pursued only if Sindh was brought under British control. The commercial possibilities of the river Sindh were an additional attraction. The road and rivers of Sindh were opened to British trade by a treaty in 1832.
• The chiefs of Sindh, known as Amirs, were made to sign a subsidiary treaty in 1839 and finally, in spite of previous assurances that its territorial integrity would be respected, Sindh was annexed in 1843 after a brief campaign by Sir Charles Napier who had earlier written in his diary: ‘we have no right to seize Sind, yet we shall do so, and a very advantageous, useful humane piece of rascality it will be’.


• The death of Maharaja Ranjit Singh in June 1839 was followed by political instability and rapid changes of government in the Punjab.
• Selfish and corrupt leaders came to the front and ultimately, power fell into the hands of the brave and patriotic but utterly indisciplined army.
• This led the British to look greedily across the Sutlej upon the land of the five rivers even though they had signed a treaty of perpetual friendship with Ranjit Singh in 1809.
• The British officials increasingly talked of having to wage a campaign in the Punjab.
• Sikh Wars, (1845-46; 1848-49), two campaigns fought between the Sikhs and the British. They resulted in the conquest and annexation by the British of the Punjab in northwestern India.

First War (1845-1846)

• The British pursued the policy of encirclement of Punjab from 1833 onwards by occupation of Ferozepur in 1835 and Sikharpur in 1836, and appointment of British Residents in Ludhiana and in Sindh in 1838 and their military preparations fuelled the animosity between the British and the Sikhs.
• The annexation of Sindh by the British in 1843 confirmed the suspicions of the Sikh and the first Anglo-Sikh War started soon after in 1845.
• The Sikh army was soon defeated under Lal Singh (P.M.) by Sir Hugh Gough at Mudki in 1845.
• The British also defeated the Sikh army under Tej Singh, Commander-in-Chief at Ferozepur in 1845.
• However, the British under Harry Smith suffered a blow at the hands of Ranjur Singh Majhithia at Buddewal in 1846.
• Finally the Sikhs were defeated by Smith at Aliwal and Sobroan (1846) on the crossing of the Sutlej and Lahore was occupiered by the British.
• The War ended with the Treaty of Lahore in 1846. Jullundar Doab was ceded to the British and payment of a war indemnity of Rs. 1.5 crore was also imposed on the Sikhs. But they were able to pay only half of this amount and for the rest the British got Kashmir which they sold to Gulab Singh.
• A British resident, Sir Henry Lawrence was appointed at Lahore and Dalip Singh was recognized as the ruler of Punjab with Rani Jindan as his regent.
• The Sikh army was reduced and its ruler was prohibited from employing any European without the prior consent of the British.
• Also, the British troops were permitted to pass through Sikh territory whenever the need arose.
• Soon after the Treaty of Bhairowal was signed in December 1846 which resulted in the removal of Rani Jindan and setting up of a Council of Regency for Punjab (consisting of 8 Sikh Sardars and presided over by Sir Henry Lawrence.)
• A British force was stationed at Lahore for which the Sikhs had to pay Rs. 22 Lakhs.
• Power was conferred to the Governor General of India to undertake and garrison any fort in Punjab.

Second War (1848-1849)

• Desire of the Sikh army to avenge their humiliation of the first war and the discontentment of the Sikh Sardars with the British control over Punjab was the underlying cause of second Anglo-Sikh war.
• Treatment of Rani Jindan by the British – her transportation to Shaikpur first and then to Benaras and the drastic reduction in her pension also fuelled the Sikh sentiments.
• The Second Sikh War began with the revolt of Mulraj, Governor of Multan, in April 1848 and became a national revolt when the Sikh army joined the rebels on September 14.
• Indecisive battles characterized by great ferocity and bad generalship were fought at Ramnagar (November 22) and at Chilianwala (Jan. 13, 1849) before the final British victory at Gujarat (February 21).
• The Sikh army surrendered on March 12, and Punjab was annexed by Lord Dalhousie and Dalip Singh disposed and pensioned off to England along with Rani Jindan.
• A Board of Three Commissioners consisting of the Lawrence brothers – Henry and John and Charles G. Mansel was constituted in 1849 to administer Punjab.
• Soon afterwards the Board was abolished and a Chief Commissioner for Punjab, Sir John Lawrence was appointed in 1853.


• Lord Dalhousie became the Governor General of the East India Company in 1848. His period of Governor Generalship witnessed the stupendous growth of British Empire at the cost of army of the Indian states.
• Dalhousie was a sweeping annexationist and he annexed a large number of Indian states in pursuance of his policy of Doctrine of lapse.
• There were a number of Indian states within the limits of the British Indian Empire. The rulers of these states had recognised British Political supremacy since the time of Lord Wellesley.
• These Indian states were completely independent to conduct their internal administration. These rulers who were under British protection did not take any interest in the administration of their territories.
• Dalhousie annexed a number of Indian states by applying the policy of Doctrine of lapse.
• The policy of Doctrine of lapse meant that in the dependent state or those who owed their very existence to the British power, the sovereignty when the natural heirs of the royal line came to end, passed back or lapse to the supreme power.”
• In other words this doctrine means that the sovereignty of the dependent states or of those held on a subordinate tenure would pass back to the British government, in case of the failure of the natural line of succession.
• The British government had acquired the position of the paramount power after the fall of the Mughal Empire and also of the Marathas.
• This doctrine was based on three principles:

– Firstly the British Government was the paramount power of the British Indian Empire.
– Secondly the rulers of the dependent states could adopt sons with the sanction of the paramount power. These adopted sons could inherit the throne only with the consent of the British government.
– Thirdly, the British government as the paramount power could withhold the succession of the adopted sons.

• During that period there were three categories of Hindu states in India:

– There were independent states which were not and never had been subordinate to a paramount power.
– Secondly, there were states which owed subordination to the British government as their suzerain power.
– Thirdly, there were Hindu States which owed their creation to the British Government. Ever since the Mughal rule the practice was that the paramount power used to sanction the succession to the throne.

• The system of adoption was prevalent among the Hindus and incase of the failure of natural heir they used to adopt sons.
• After the death of a native ruler his adopted son used to perform the funeral rites and succeed to the throne. But Dalhousie proceeded to annex the native states setting aside the claims of the adopted sons.
• Dalhousie annexed a number of native states by applying the policy of Doctrine of lapse.
• However no precise distinction was made between independent, allied, dependent and subordinate states.
• Dalhousie annexed Karauli on the ground that it was a dependent state but this was over ruled by the Directors of the company on the ground that Karauli” was a protected ally.

• Dalhousie acted on the general principle of annexing if he could do so legitimately”.
• He annexed Satara in 1848; Jaipur and Sambalpur in 1849; Bhaghat in 1850; Udaipur in 1852; Jhansi in 1853 and Nagpur in 1854 by the application of this policy.
• The first victim of the Doctrine of Lapse was the Maratha Kingdom of Satara, in 1848 the Raja of Satara Appasahib died.
• Narayan Singh Raja of Sambalpur died without adopting a son. So Dalhousie annexed Sambalpur in 1849.
• In 1853 Gangathar Rao died without leaving a male heir. Dalhousie set aside the claim of his adopted son Anand Rao and declared the state as an escheat. Dalhousie infact annexed Jhansi considering it to be a creation of the company. For this reason the widow Queen Laxmi Bai became an arch enemy of the English and played a leading part in the great revolt of 1857.
• The Doctrine of Lapse was also applied to the removal of titles and Pensions. Peshwa Baji Rao II was enjoying an annual pension of eight lakhs of rupees. But after his death his adopted son Nana Saheb was deprived of his pension and title. For this reason Nana Saheb took a leading part in the revolt of 1857.
• After the death of the Titular Nawab of Carnatic Dalhousie did not recognise any one as his successor.
• On the death of the Maratha Raja Tanjore in 1855 without any male issue the regal title was abolished.
• The Doctrine of Lapse of Dalhousie created a feeling of uncertainty and uneasiness in the mind of the native rulers. The adopted sons of the deceased rulers resented the policy of the British government.
• The princes who lost their throne took active part in the revolt of 1857.
• Thus by 1857 the whole of the Indian sub-continent came under the British rule.
• The Marathas and the Rajputs ceased to make History after 1818.
• The rise of the Sikhs after 1839 was of little impact. The East India Company became the paramount power on the soil of India.


• The British relations with the state of Oudh go back to the Treaty of Allahabad in 1765.
• Right from Warren Hastings, many Governor-Generals advised the Nawab of Oudh to improve the administration. But, misrule continued there and the Nawab was under the assumption that the British would not annex Oudh because of his loyalty to them.
• In 1851, William Sleeman, Resident at Lucknow, reported of human misery and careless misrule. But Sleeman was against the policy of annexing Oudh.
• After surveying the situation in Oudh, Dalhousie annexed it in 1856.
• Nawab Wajid Ali was granted a pension of 12 lakhs rupees per year. The annexed territory came under the control of a Chief Commissioner.
• Dalhousie’s annexation of Oudh, the last one among his annexations, created great political danger. The annexation offended the Muslim elite.
• More dangerous was the effect on the British army’s Indian troops, many of whom came from Oudh. They had occupied a privileged position before its annexation.
• Under the British Government they were treated as equals with the rest of the population. This was a loss of prestige for them.
• In these various ways, the annexation of Oudh contributed to the Mutiny of 1857.



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