89 India Under British Rule Facts To Brush-up Your History | Kidadl


89 India Under British Rule Facts To Brush-up Your History

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Read these Tokyo facts to learn all about the Japanese capital.

The British East India Company first arrived in India in 1608, and by 1858, they had complete control over the country.

One of the turning points in Indian history, the Battle of Plassey, lasted only a few hours, starting at sunrise and finishing shortly before dark. The British rule is considered to be a time of exploitation and poverty for India.

The term 'British Raj' refers to direct British administration over Indian territories seized by the British. This includes Britain's influence on a number of separate princely states. These territories were ruled by their own traditional rulers but were subject to the authority of the British Crown.

British rule ended nearly 200 years later, at midnight on August 14, 1947, with Jawaharlal Nehru's famous address on India's 'tryst with destiny.' A period of around 200 years is a lengthy time.

The frequent desire to compare India in 1757 when British control began to India in 1947 when British rule ended would give us very little information because India would not have remained the same as it was at the time of Plassey in the absence of British administration. The country's history would not have come to a halt if the British takeover had not occurred.

If you are yet to discover unknown facts about India under British Raj, then read on to gain better knowledge about it.

Life During British Rule In India

Below are some intriguing facts about the British Indian Empire and the lifestyle of the people during that period.

The British Raj is a term used to describe British rule from the time of the revolt.

During this period, a small handful of British officials and troops (about 20,000 in total) ruled over 300 million Indians.

This was commonly seen as proof that the majority of Indians accepted, if not approved, of British authority.

Without the cooperation of Indian kings and local leaders, as well as a large number of Indian troops, police officers, government officials, and so on, Britain could not have governed India.

Britain had been trading in India since before 1600, but it did not begin seizing vast tracts of land until 1757, following the Battle of Plassey.

Soon after, the East India Company took control of a large portion of the Indian subcontinent. In India, this time was also known as the company rule.

The Indian Rebellion of 1857, also known as the Indian Mutiny, was an unsuccessful rebellion in India against the British East India Company that resulted in the East India Company's collapse. As a result, the British government took control and established the British Raj.

The Mutiny, also known as the Sepoy Mutiny, the Indian Resurrection, the Great Rebellion, and the First War of Independence, resulted in the deaths of at least a few thousand Indian mercenaries known as sepoys and a few hundred British people.

On August 2, 1858, the British Parliament approved the Government of India Act, which transferred British sovereignty over India from the company to the Crown.

The British Raj governed only about two-thirds of modern India, with the remainder under the power of local kings.

However, Britain imposed significant pressure on these rulers, virtually controlling the whole Indian subcontinent.

Over 560 major and small princes maintained separate administration in these areas; some of its rulers had even fought against the British during the Mutiny but afterward negotiated treaties with the British rule.

The more affluent classes were educated in English schools. They worked for the British Army or the civil service. They effectively collaborated with the British to dominate their Indian neighbors.

Indians were also forbidden from entering high office in their own country at the time.

People of color have had to struggle extremely hard for equal rights and opportunities in the aftermath of European imperialism.

India also shipped huge amounts of goods to the United Kingdom, mainly tea, which was consumed or sold by the United Kingdom to other countries.

There was also the question of human resources. Britain's most valued resource was most certainly the Indian Army. The Army consumed almost 40% of India's wealth. Britain employed this Army all over the world.

Sir Stafford Cripps, a member of the War Cabinet was sent to India in March 1942 to debate the British Government's Draft Declaration. The draught granted India Dominion status following the war but made few substantive revisions to the British Government Act of 1935.

Impact Of British Rule On Indians

Discover more facts about the British Indian Empire and everlasting British influence on India.

England, in what is now known as the United Kingdom, desired more land overseas on which to establish new communities, known as colonies.

These colonies would offer valuable goods to England, including metals, sugar, and tobacco, which they might also export to other countries.

The size of the British Empire; the amount of land and people under the control of the British empire – has evolved over time.

It was the world's largest empire at its peak in 1922, spanning over a quarter of the Earth's geographic surface and ruling over 458 million people.

Queen Victoria promised that the British government would endeavor to improve the conditions of its Indian subjects.

To the British, this meant training Indians in British ways of thinking and eradicating traditional customs such as 'sati'—the practice of immolating a widow after her husband died.

Various legal measures were enacted to better the status of women in society.

The British were eager to introduce the English language into Indian society.

The British saw their control as an example of 'autocratic paternalism.'

In the 1880s, India accounted for almost 20% of overall British exports. By 1910, the value of these exports had risen to £137 million.

The British officers also implemented the 'divide and rule' strategy, which pitted Hindu and Muslim Indians against one another.

The colonial authority separated Bengal into Hindu and Muslim portions in 1905, however, this partition was later reversed due to loud protests.

In 1907, Britain also sponsored the foundation of the Muslim League of India.

The Muslim League was founded in Dhaka (now in Bangladesh).

There were constraints on what could be published and spread during the British Raj.

Some of Rabindranath Tagore's novels were even prohibited. The government of India no longer had such a requirement after the British Raj was lifted.

Even though the Indian media was frequently muzzled during the rule – largely to prevent criticism of imperial rule, such as during the Bengal famine of 1943 - the British history of a free press provided a good model for independent India to follow.

Sir Charles Wood was President of the Board of Control of East India Company from 1852 to 1855, and he established British education policy in India.

Mahatma Gandhi was a significant figure in the Indian Independence movement!

Quit India Movement

This movement, also known as the 'August Movement,' was a nationwide act of protest.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi began the 'Quit India Movement' on August 8, 1942, at the All-India Congress Committee session in Bombay.

In the days that followed, there were disorderly and nonviolent protests around the country.

By the middle of 1942, Japanese troops were approaching India's frontiers.

China, the United States, and Britain were putting pressure on each other to resolve the problem of India's future position before the war ended.

The failure of the Cripps Mission strained relations between the Congress and the Government of Britain even more.

Gandhi capitalized on the failure of the Cripps Mission, Japanese gains in South-East Asia, and popular dissatisfaction with the British in India.

He advocated for the voluntary withdrawal of the British from India.

The fundamental motivation for the formation of the Quit India Movement was that the British were going to pull the country into World War II without its consent to fight on behalf of the United Kingdom.

Anti-British and full independence sentiments spread throughout India and its people.

On July 14, 1942, the Congress Working Committee met again in Wardha and decided to give Gandhi command of the nonviolent mass campaign.

The proposal, informally known as the 'Quit India' resolution, was set to be approved by the All India Congress Committee during its conference in Bombay in August.

The All India Congress Committee convened in Bombay on August 7 and 8, 1942, and ratified the 'Quit India' resolution.

Gandhi popularized the slogan 'Do or Die' and arranged a lot of campaigns during this time to do so.

Gandhi, members of the Indian National Congress, and other Congress leaders the next day, were arrested under the rule of Defence of British governance on August 9, 1942.

The arrest of Gandhi and other Congress leaders sparked widespread protests across India.

Thousands of people were killed or injured as a result of the Quit India movement. Strikes were called in a number of locations.

Under the Criminal Law Amendment Act of 1908, the Working Committee, the All India Congress Committee, and the four Provincial Congress Committees were proclaimed unlawful associations.

Public gatherings were prohibited under Rule 56 of the Defence of India Rules.

More than anything else, the Quit India Movement unified the Indian people against British rule

Facts About British Rule In India

The British Raj had equally good and bad consequences and played an important role in shaping the socio-political situation of the country. Here are some interesting facts for you to have a quick read.

The Mughal Empire, an early-modern empire that spanned two centuries, was present in India prior to the British Raj.

Mughal rule lasted from 1526 until 1720, making an indelible mark on Indian history and culture.

Following the Indian Rebellion of 1857, the British government took over the administration and formed the British Raj.

India's per-capita income stayed largely stagnant during the British rule, with most of its GDP growth coming from an expanding population.

A British governor-general was given control of India, and he reported to the British Parliament.

During peacetime, a large number of British imperial troops were stationed in India to serve as garrisons and to help secure the hazardous North-West Frontier region bordering Afghanistan.

Throughout the war, the British government was careful not to put too much pressure on the Indian Army to send forces to overseas operations.

The British continued to regard the Indian Army's principal responsibility as preserving and maintaining British India's security.

Without consulting Indian officials, Britain declared war on Germany on India's behalf during World War I.

By the time of the armistice, almost 1.5 million Indian troops and workers were serving in the British Indian Army.

The British Indian Army sent around 1.4 million Indian and British soldiers to fight in the war, which was fought mostly in Iraq and the Middle East.

When World War II broke out, India once again made significant contributions to the British war effort.

In addition to Indian Army men, the princely kingdoms contributed large sums of money.

India had an astounding volunteer army of more than 2.5 million men by the end of World War II. Approximately 87,000 Indian soldiers were killed in action.

A panel led by British judge Sidney Rowlatt was tasked with investigating 'revolutionary conspiracies,' with the underlying goal of expanding the government's wartime powers.

When the Indian independence movement was well-established, the British forces and governance were widely despised.

There were several underlying causes for the disliking: One being that Indian sepoys had to clean the cartridges with their teeth before reloading, and it was suspected that the British had filled the rifle cartridges with cow and pig meat, which offended Hindus and Muslims.

The insurrection resulted in the deaths of many British residents and soldiers living in India. The insurrection altered Britain's relationship with its colonies and signaled the end of the East India Company.

Despite being one of the most contentious occurrences in the empire's history, the Bengal famine is one of history's less-discussed occasions.

Approximately 3 million Bengalis died as a result of malnourishment and the famine that precipitated the calamity. Some may believe that the drought was caused by natural factors; however, this was not the case.

There's the infamous Jallianwala Bagh massacre. According to official numbers, British troops fired 1,650 rounds at unarmed civilians, killing 379 and injuring 1,137. Those who were killed had no notion their assembly had been declared illegal, and they had received no warning to depart.

The railways were developed primarily for the benefit of the British, who used their own technology and asked Indians to purchase British equipment.

The British ambition to wean themselves off Chinese tea drove them to establish plantations in India. After numerous futile efforts, they discovered a local version that worked. The British cleared extensive woods for this purpose and paid Indian laborers to cultivate the cleared regions.

The British rule also introduced new sports in India. The much-loved game of cricket was brought to India by Britishers.

The British were the pioneers of advocating the learning of the English language in India. This was done by them to facilitate a means of better communication between them and the working class, for a smoother working environment.

Did You Know...

Historians have been researching and discovering new facts about the British Empire for almost 400 years. And today, more than ever, people are recognizing, questioning, and comprehending the real story of this pivotal period in world history.

There are some little remnants of the British Empire that persist today as 'British Overseas Territories.' These are primarily self-governing countries independent from the United Kingdom that maintain ties with the country.

The British Empire had truly left its mark on the world by the time it came to an end.

Under British dominion, countries suffered significant social, economic, and political changes. But what the British Empire left behind is a difficult issue that is still debated and debated today.

Historically, the British saw their empire as an era that gave power and prosperity to the country, sponsoring exciting new innovations, technology, the trading of exotic products, and assisting other countries to 'modernize.'

There was unfortunately some bias attached to the way they thought about most things.

When the British Empire was being formed, the majority of the British people believed they were doing the right thing.

In their eyes, they were improving and developing areas, as well as bringing order to non-white countries that they perceived to be 'uncivilized' and 'backward' due to racial beliefs.

The British also believed they were doing God's work by propagating Christianity, which they saw as the true faith.

The past has witnessed a number of prejudices and wrongdoings especially during the colonization of weaker countries.

While we cannot deny these facts; the good thing is that the world today has progressed a lot in terms of thoughts and beliefs than what it was centuries ago!

Written By
Megha Sarkar

<p>Megha, currently studying fashion technology at the National Institute of Fashion Technology in New Delhi, brings a unique blend of passion and dedication to the table. Beyond her academic pursuits, Megha engages in dance and photography as her hobbies, both of which fuel her creativity. As an active member of her college's dance society and photography club, she continually hones her artistic abilities while also contributing to her college community.</p>

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