How did British occupied India 🥇British East India Company

How did the British occupied India | British East India Company

Today we are going to talk about east India company and British rule.

How the British expanded their territory by fighting and winning important battles and How they expanded their control throughout the Indian sub-continent.

It was the Mughal emperor Jahangir who allowed the east India company to Establish their 1st factory at Surat in 1612.

And from their east India started operating as a business entity in India.

They used to present expensive gifts for Indian Kings.

British also provided financial support to Indian Kings in some cases for gaining the favors of Indian kings.

By following this cunning strategy, East India Company gained the favor of the king of the Vijayanagara Empire, An empire that ruled over South India.

East India Company started their second factory in 1640 in Madras with the help and permission of the Vijayanagara Empire.

Similarly, after 1660 they started one company at Mumbai coast and another one at Calcutta.

So look at their strategy closely they were trying to dominate these coastal areas.

Because if you want to invade a country you have to get through their coastal barriers first.

Along with the East India Company, there were also some other foreign powers like Dutch Portuguese, and French operating in those coastal areas.

And now the big question comes to everyone’s mind.

How did the British occupied India | British East India Company

Who gave these foreigners permission to have their own army?

Unfortunately, the answer is our own Indian rulers mostly the Mughals of India.

Some of the last sultans of the Mughal Empire were weak and did not do any good for India.

They just enjoyed their position as the sultan and were happy with the expensive gifts presented to them by these foreigners.

In the Beginning East India Company only had permission to have security guards to protect their trade.

But in the middle of the 18th Century East India Company and other foreign powers convinced Indian kings that their business and trade need to be protected and for that, they need to maintain a fully equipped army which comprises Artillery, Cavalry, and Infantry regiments.

Then East India Company started the game of Power and Dominance.

They deployed their troops at Bengal, Madras, and Bombay.

By 1844, the combined strength of East India Company Armies was about 2.5 lakhs.

And ironically in the British army, more than 90% of soldiers were native Indians and only a handful of them were Europeans.

Now let us see the battles one by one which shaped Indian History.

1612- Battle of Swally British East India fought a battle with the Portuguese Army and came out as the winner.

These foreign powers also had battles with others because everyone wanted to establish their rule over India.

On the other hand, Indian Rulers showed no unity against these foreign powers and they kept fighting with each other.

The attacks of Marathas and the Sikh Empire weakened the Mughals.

In 1634 and 1635 the battles were fought at the Amritsar and Kartarpur in which Sikh Empire defeated Mughal Empire.

When Mughals were trying to recover from their losses done by the Sikh empire.

Maratha Empire launched an attack on them.

During the period of 1665 to 1670, Marathas and Mughals fought many battles among them.

The Battle of Surat fought in 1665 was the critical battle in which the Maratha Empire sacked Surat.

These leading Indian empires were fighting with each other tirelessly which resulted in losing lots of manpower and Money.

Historians say that Mughal Sultan Aurangzeb spent most of his life-fighting the war with the Maratha and Sikh rebellion.

British East India Company sometimes used to extend their support to some of the Indian rulers in these battles.

British wanted these emperors to fight with each other so that they can get some advantage out of it.

They started interfering in Indian Politics in the name of Help.

After 1750, East India Company became aggressive.

They started to fight battles against Indian rulers.

In 1757 Battle of Plassey against Nawab Siraj ud daulah and in 1764 the battle of Buxar against combined armies of Bengali nawabs and Mughal emperor Shah Alam the 2nd.

They won both battles.

In the battle of Plassey Nawab Siraj ud daulah was all set to attack the British army but his own companion Mir Jafar betrayed him.

Mir Jafar told Siraj ud daulah to retreat for the day.

Siraj ud daulah made a huge mistake by listening to him.

He told his troops to retreat.

Following nawab’s command, troops were returning to their camps.

An all of a sudden Robert clive attacked Siraj ud daulahs army.

Robert Clive was the commander in chief of the British Army.

Surprised by the sudden attack nawab’s army could not figure out any way to fight the British.

They lost their discipline and fled away in that confusing situation.

Siraj Ud daulah escaped somehow but again with the help of Mir Jafar British captured him and later executed him.

Mir Jafar did all this to become Nawab of Bengal.

We can clearly notice the divide and rule strategy of the British East India company here.

Then in the battle of Buxar in 1764, they defeated the combined forces of Bengali nawabs

and Mughal emperor, Shah Alam, the 2nd.

And by winning these battles they won the rights of collecting taxes from Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa.

After celebrating their victory, they were eying towards the regions around Mumbai and Madras for expanding their dominion.

And for that purpose, they started the war against the Mysore kingdom.

How did the British occupied India | British East India Company

They fought 4 battles with the Mysore kingdom.

They are known as the anglo Mysore wars.

In the 1st Anglo Mysore war, the Mysore kingdom successfully defeated the British under the command of Hyder Ali.

Hyder Ali was almost about to capture Madras and challenge the British command over Madras.

Hyder Ali was the father of the great king Tipu Sultan.

In the 2nd Anglo Mysore war, Tipu sultan fought the battle alongside his father Hyder Ali.

Hyder Ali lost his life during the 2nd anglo Mysore war.

However, the Tipu sultan continued the war even after the death of his father Hyder Ali.

Finally, the 2nd war ended with the British-Indian treaty.

This was the last treaty that gave any Indian empire equal benefits and rights.

How did the British occupied India | British East India Company

The 3rd war between Mysore and the British started because the tipu sultan invaded areas around Travancore.

British allies were ruling over Travancore.

And because of that British saw it as a threat and they declared war against Mysore.

British brought war to the Mysore kingdom’s doorsteps.

The war ended after the siege of Seringapatam.

Tipu had to sign a treaty and was forced to surrender half of his kingdom.

In the fourth Anglo-Mysore war tipu was seeking help from France.

Napoleon agreed to help the tipu sultan against the British.

Napoleon wrote a letter to tipu sultan in which he said- You have already been informed of my arrival on the borders of the Red Sea, with an innumerable and invincible army, full of the desire of releasing and relieving you from the iron yoke of England.”

But the British wouldn’t let this happen.

They wanted to break this coalition and they did it successfully.

Tipu couldn’t get any help from France and When the British attacked Seringapatnam again.

Tipu Sultan was shot dead by British officers.

This defeat of Mysore resulted in the consolidation of British power in Southern India.

Now the British were aiming to take down the Maratha Empire because the Maratha empire was the last ruling Indian empire that could challenge British power in India.

Marathas fought three battles with the British East India company 1st 2nd and 3rd anglo Maratha wars.

In the 1st Anglo Maratha war, Marathas fought bravely against the British East India company and ended this war by signing the Salbai treaty.

According to this treaty, the British gained control over Maharashtra’s Salsette island and Gujarat’s Bharuch district.

However British wanted to gain absolute power in India and for that defeating Marathas was vital so they declared 2nd war against Marathas.

in the 2nd war, Maratha lost control over the parts of Odisha Rajasthan and Gujarat.

Many Maratha soldiers died during these battles and this resulted in the weakening of the Maratha Empire.

3rd Anglo Maratha war was a final and decisive conflict between Maratha Empire and the British East India company.

During the third Anglo Maratha war lack of unity was seen among the commanders of the Maratha empire.

British took advantage of this lack of unity and defeated the Maratha empire in Battle.

This was the end of the last ruling Indian kingdom.

After this war, no king had that amount of military power that could challenge the British East India company.

However, in 1857 some Indian leaders came together and rebelled against the British East India company.

This is known as the Indian rebellion of 1857 or sepoy mutiny.

But British successfully crushed this rebellion.

After the rebellion of 1857 British crowns took control over India and Queen Victoria became the Empress of India.

So this is how the British slowly won over India by using their cunning and smart military strategies.
How did the British occupied India | British East India Company

Now 5 lesser-known facts about things the British Empire did to India regarding business and education.

  • British Empire was not interested in providing education to Indians.
  • The literacy rate of India was below 20% during the British rule in India.
  • British introduced the railway in India. But they introduced the railway for their own benefit of draining India out of its resources.
  • British also Destroyed the textile industry of India. Before British rule, India was the largest exporter of Textiles.
  • This is How Indian Member of Parliament and world diplomat Mr. Shashi Tharoor explained how British rule destroyed India.

Now three more facts

Irrigation techniques were also introduced by the British in India after 1857 British East India company started postal services in India.

In 1937 post offices were established in principal towns of India and postmasters were appointed by the government-controlled by East India company.

In 1856 British introduced The Hindu widow’s remarriage act which would allow Hindu widows to remarry after the demise of their husbands.

Social reformers like Raja Ram Mohan Roy supported east India company for implementing this act in Indian Community.

Raja Ram Mohan Roy and Ishwar Chandra Vidya Sagar even offered money to men who would take widows as their brides, but these men often deserted their new wives after collecting the offered money.

So that was it for today guys If you are interested to learn more about British India.

Check the book out An era of Darkness written by Shashi Tharoor with including all the Important Pieces of evidence.

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AUTHORNishant Chandravanshi

Nishant Chandravanshi is the founder of The Magadha Times & Chandravanshi. Nishant Chandravanshi is Youtuber, Social Activist & Political Commentator.

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