REVOLT OF 1857
Reasons for revolt of 1857
- Administrative policies of British government : Introduction of Judicial Reforms, Abolition of sati & Operation of Christian Missionaries in India.
- Economic Causes : Decline of handicrafts , Change in land Revenue System De Urbanisation in Indian and Commercialization of Agriculture.
- Political causes : Imperialist policies of British Government, Specially during the reign of William Hastings and Lord Dalhousie.
- Immediate cause: Use of Enfield rifles which was rumored to have cartridges made up of cow and pig meat.
Nature and character of 1857 revolt
- Backward Looking: Rebels were regressive in character They want to maintain the status quo of Medieval Period.
- Multiclass Revolt: Peasants, merchants, landlords and many former rulers participated in this revolt.
- Unplanned in character: There was no prior planning or any planned effort by the Indian rebels. Most of the revolts at that time in India was spontaneous in character.
Participation in 1857 revolt
|Area||Indian Leader||British officer|
|Delhi||Bahadur Shah Zaffar Khan||John Nicolson,Hudson,Outram|
|Jhansi||Rani Lakshmi Bai||Huge Ross|
|Kanpur||Tantia Tope||Major General Havelock|
|Arra||Kunwar Singh||William Taylor & General Eye|
|Lucknow||Begum Hazrat Mahal||Henry Lawrence|
Limitations of revolt of 1857
- Lack of Resources: Indian rebels fought with conventional weapons while British army was equipped with modern guns and artilleries.
- Communication problems: British empire extensively used Telegraph lines to communicate with each other. While Indians were still using old fashioned technique to spread the rebellion.
- Absence of All Classes: Only North India was most impacted with the rebellion. Holkars of Indore, Sikh Chieftains, Provinces like Bombay, Madras and Bengal remain unaffected with the Rebellion.
Changes in British Administration after 1857 revolt
- Changes in Army structure: Strength of English troops was increased from 45 thousand to 60 thousand. Ratio of Europeans soldiers to Indians soldiers in the army was raised.
- Changes in Princely states: Princely states which helped British government were rewarded and given the title “ Stars of India” whereas the areas where the rebellion was in full swing was heavenly punished.
- Changes in british paramountcy policy: It ended the era of annexation. Betterment of India Act,1858 was issued on 1 Nov,1858. British government changed its policy from Subordinate Isolation to Subordinate Union.