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History of India

Modern Indian History (Part - 1)

Eighteenth Century’s India

After the demise of the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in 1707, the disintegration of the Mughal Empire had gained a sharp momentum. The Mughal court at Delhi was split into many factions comprising Irani, Turani and Hindustani groups, who often indulged in mutual jealousies, antagonism and political conspiracies. Four rulers namely, Farrukh Siyar, Raffi­ud-Darajat, Raffi-ud-daula and Muhammad Shah ascended the Mughal throne one upon another in quick succession within the year 1719 itself.

Social Condition

  • During the 18th century the social and religious condition of India was no better than its political condition.While Europe during the said period was passing through the process of enlightenment and renaissance. India was given to social apathy and inertness.

  • Social rigidity and out-of-date customs had become the conspicuous features of the 18th century India. Retrogressive rituals and superstitions had taken deep roots.

  • There was always the fear of being ostracised for violating the caste rules. The practice of untouchability, another social evil, was a result of this rigid caste system.

  • The position of women in the 18th century India was likewise poor and pitiable owing to various social and religious restrictions imposed on them. Prepuberty marriage of the girl child was one such practice. As a result, not only the girls were deprived of proper education and healthcare but also fell victim to early widowhood.

  • Another cruel social practice was sati. Under this practice, women were forced to commit sati by burning themselves on the funeral pyres of their dead husbands. The system of purdah, was one more evil practice. The practice was not very popular among the lower caste working women both in the rural as well as the urban areas and among the women in southern India.

  • Birth of a girl child came to be regarded as unfortunate among many Hindu castes. Hence, inhuman and cruel practices like female infanticide also became popular.

  • The system of devadasi prevalent in some temples of the Madras Presidency and Orissa presented one more pathetic instance of the condition of women in contemporary India.

  • They were not entitled to own property. Hence, the life of women remained mired in ignorance, illiteracy and poverty.

Economic Condition

  • The economic condition of India during the 18th century closely resembled its deteriorating social conditions. Traditional handicraft and cottage industries were on the decline.
  • The British hastened this process and devastated the country’s economy by adopting the methods of unequal competition and political domination. The foreign trading companies earned 100 to 200 times more profit by selling goods that were produced by employing Indian workers and by using Indian raw materials.

Political Condition

  • The disintegration of the Mughal Empire became rapid after the death of Aurangzeb in 1707. By the reign of Shah Alam II (1759-1806), its boundary had shrunk from ‘Alam to Palam’ i.e. from the Red Fort in Delhi to its nearby village Palam.

  • The British had already conquered Delhi in 1803 though the Mughal rule continued for namesake till 1857. After the death of Aurangzeb. a tussle for power took place among his three sons - Muhammad Muazzam, Muhammad Azam and Kam Bakhsh.

  • Azam was defeated at Jajau (between Agra and Dholpur) on 18th June, 1707 and died from war injuries in the ensuing battle. Muazzam then declared himself the new Emperor and assumed the title of Bahadur Shah I. He defeated the other surviving brother Kam Bakhsh near Hyderabad on 13 January, 1709, who also died of war injuries.

  • Bahadur Shah I defeated at Lohgarh in December 1710 but the Sikhs could not be suppressed. Consequently in 1712, the fort of Lohgarh again came under them.

  • The lack of administrative acumen on the part of Bahadur Shah I and the depleting treasury worsened the health of the Mughal Empire. Indeed, the situation was so pathetic that during his own lifetime, Bahadur Shah I was being widely referred to as Shah-i-Bekhabar. He died on 27 February, 1712.

  • Jahandar Shah ultimately got the better of his other brothers and ascended the throne with the active support of Zulfikar Khan, the powerful leader of the Irani group in his court. He appointed Zulfikar Khan as his Wazir and, during the short span of his rule (March 1712 - Feb. 1713), lie tried to run the administration.

  • He did away with the hated jaziya tax. He also honoured Rana Jai Singh of Amber with the title of Mirza Raja Jai Singh ‘sawai’ and appointed him as the subahdar of Malwa. The king of Marwar, Raja Ajit Singh was appointed as subahdar of Gujarat.

  • He strengthened friendly ties with the Jat leaders, Churaman and Chhatrasal Bundella. He tried to improve his relations with Shahuji and gave him the conditional rights of chauth and sardeshmukhi of Deccan.

  • But his policy towards the Sikhs remained repressive.He also tried to check the increasing powers of the jagirdars. Very soon his nephew Farrukh Siyar made use of the opportunity to gain power and with the support of the Saiyid brothers got him killed and became the Emperor himself

  • During the reign of Farrukh Siyar (1713-1719), the Saiyid brothers - Abdulla Khan and Hussain Ali Khan, controlled the levers of power. They were widely known as the -king makers’.

  • Farrukh Siyar in appreciation of their contribution appointed Abdulla Khan as the wazir and Hussain Ali Khan as the mir bakshi. The Saiyid brothers tried to gear up the administration. But they too had to struggle against the Rajputs, the Sikhs and the Jats. Hussain Ali marched against Ajit Singh of Marwar and forced him to enter into a treaty with the Emperor.

  • Under the leadership of Banda Bairagi, the influence of the Sikhs was increasing in Punjab. They had protected themselves in the fort of Gurdaspur. The Mughal army after a lot of struggle succeeded in capturing the fort in December 1715. Banda Bairagi along with his hundreds of supporters was brought to Delhi in an iron lock-up and killed.

  • When Jats under the leadership of Churaman revolted against the Mughals, Raja Jai Singh Sawai was sent to put them down. But they entered into a compromise in 1718.

  • After the death of Farrukh Siyar, the Saiyid brothers crowned two young princes in quick succession. They were Rafi-ud-darajat and Rafi-ud­daula. Their tenures were short-lived as both of them died shortly after ascending the throne.

  • Finally, the Saiyid brothers’ choice fell upon Muhammad Shah the fourth son of Bahadur Shah I) whose rule lasted from 1719 to 1748. After Muhammad Shah’s accession, the Saiyid brothers fell victim to the intrigue of the Turani Amris, who hatched conspiracies to kill them. On 9 October, 1720, Hussain Ali was murdered and the next month his elder brother Abdulla Khan was imprisoned, where he was poisoned to death in 1722.

  • Muhammad Shah was pleasure-loving ruler on account of which he was also known as Muhammad Shah ‘Rangila’. The Iranian King Nadir Shah invaded India in 1739 and let loose a reign of plunder and bloodshed in Delhi.

  • After the death of Muhammad Shah, his son Ahmad Shah ascended his throne of Delhi. He ruled for about six years (1748-1754). But during this period, the law and order situation deteriorated and the Empire weakened to a degree from where it could not recover.

  • The greater shock to the Mughal Empire during the reign of Ahmad Shah had come from Ahmad Shah Abdali, who raided India several times. In the mean time, Ahmad Shah was deposed and killed in prison by his own Wazir Imad-ul-Mulk in 1754.

  • After Ahmad Shah, Aziz-ud-din, a grandson of Jahandar Shah, was placed on the throne as Alamgir II (1754-1759). Alamgir II’s successors - Shah Alam II (1759-1806), Akbar Shah II (1806-1837) and Bahadur Shah II (1837-1857) - were Emperors only in name. Subsequently, the control of Delhi passed on to the hands of the British in 1803.

Nadir Shah

  • During the reign of Muhammad Shah the invasion of the Persian ruler Nadir Shah dealt a severe blow to the Mughal Empire and shook it from within. Originally known as Nadir Quli, the Persian ruler was born in 1688. His father was a shepherd, who used to weave caps out of sheep wool.

  • He conquered Kandhar in 1738 and then he shifted his attention towards India. He had asked the Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah not to give shelter to the Afghan fugitives but the Emperor could not prevent such a thing from happening.

  • A fierce battle was fought between the two armies at Karnal in February 1739. Saadat Khan’s forces also joined the Mughal army. Karnal battle lasted for just three hours. Khan-i-Duran was killed in the battle, Saadat Khan was arrested and put into prison.

  • Nizam-ul-Mulk entered into an agreement with Nadir Shah under which the Mughal Emperor was required to pay a compensation of 50 lakh rupees to Nadir Shah. 20 lakh rupees were to be paid immediately.

  • Saadat Khan offered Nadir Shah 20 crore rupees and thereby instigated him to attack Delhi. Considering the inducement as an opportunity. Nadir Shah marched towards Delhi and on March 20. 1739, reached the Mughal capital.

  • It is said that about 30,000 people of the capital were massacred in this mayhem. Nadir Shah stayed in Delhi for two months and then returned to Persia. Finally, when he returned, Nadir Shah carried with him wealth worth 70 crore rupees. His booty also included the priceless peacock throne built by Shah Jahan and the famous Kohinoor diamond.

Ahmad Shah Abdali

  • Nadir Shah was assassinated in 1747, this led Ahmad Shah Abdali to first proclaim himself as the ruler of Kandhar and afterwards he conquered Kabul. He launched his first invasion of Punjab in 1748. It was followed by another invasion in 1749 in which he defeated Muin-ul-Mulk, the Governor of Punjab.

  • Abdali invaded Punjab for the third time and captured Sindh in 1752,while reaffirming his suzerainty over Punjab. Abdali invaded Punjab for the fourth time in 1756 and marched up to Delhi and looted Indian territory as far as Mathura and Agra.

  • However, before his return, he recognised Alamgir II as the Emperor. Imad-ul-Daula as the wazir and the Rohela chief Najib-ud-daula as his personal representative and mir bakshi of the Empire.

  • Abdali fought with the Marathas in the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761, on his fifth invasion. The last of Abdali’s invasions took place in 1767 taking advantage, of the political confusion in Delhi. Ahmad Shah Abdali was enraged at the ouster of his son Timur Shah from Punjab. Therefore, he invaded India to take revenge on the Marathas.

  • A fierce battle was fought on 14 Jan, 1761 between the two forces at Panipat. After initial successes, the Marathas suffered a crushing defeat and bath the Maratha commanders lost their lives, in the battle. Mahadji Scindia received injuries in feet and left the battlefield. Malhar Rao Holkar did not take active part in the battle.The Peshwa, unable to bear the shock of defeat and the death of two promising Maratha commanders, died a broken heart.

  • The major reasons behind the Maratha debacle in the “Third Battle of Panipat were the faulty strategy of war adopted by the Marathas and the lack of solidarity among the Indian rulers. The Third Battle of Panipat was decisive for more than one reason, After the death of Aurangzeb, the Marathas were fast emerging as the dominant power in India, But their crushing defeat in the battle shattered their strength.


  • As Shahuji lacked administrative experience, he elevated his trusted officer Balaji Vishwanath to the post of Peshwa. The Peshwas, noteworthy among whom, are Balaji Vishwanath (1713-­1720), Baji Rao (1720-1740), Balaji Baji Rao (1740-1761), Madhav Rao (1761-1772), Narayan Rao (1772-1773), Madhav Rao II (1773-1796), and Baji Rao II (1796-1818), contributed immensely to the expansion of the Maratha power.

  • Balaji Vishwanath got the right to collect ‘chauth’ and `sardeshmukhi’ from the six Mughal provinces in Deccan viz. Khandesh, Berar, Bidar, Bijapur. Golkunda and Aurangabad. He also assisted in the plans to dislodge the Saiyid brothers.

  • After defeating the Nizam in the battle of Palkhed, BR secured the rights to collect the chauth and sardeshmukhi from the Mughal provinces in Deccan. He led a campaign against the Siddis of Janjira and expelled them from the mainland in 1733.

  • He contributed his victory campaign and defeated even the Protuguese to gain control over the areas of Salsette and Bassein. Thus the tenure of Baji Rao I saw the rise of the Marathas as a strong contender for power in Delhi.

  • He joined hands with Raghuji Bhonsle of Nagpur, Malhar Rao Holkar of Indore: Pillaji Gaekwad of Baroda and Ranoji Scindia of Gwalior and formed a powerful Maratha Confederacy.

  • The third Peshwa was Balaji Baji Rao (1740-1761). Like his father, he became the Peshwa when he was just 20 years of age. After the death of Shahuji in 1748, his powers increased manifold. He became the Peshwa and the virtual ruler of the Maratha Confederacy at once.

  • The Maratha chief Raghuji Bhonsle attacked Nawab Alivardi Khan of Bengal and forced him to surrender Orissa and agree to an animal payment of chauth of Bengal and Bihar.

  • Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao defeated the Nizam of Hyderabad in the year 1760 and won control over Bijapur, Ahmadnagar, some parts of Bidar, the fort of Daultabad, and several other fortresses in the south. But his decisive battle was fought against the Afghan invader Ahmad Shah Abdali at Panipat in 1761. In this decisive battle, the Peshwa had to suffer a crushing defeat, which gave a severe blow to the rising Maratha supremacy.


  • Saadat Khan established a state in Awadh. His actual name was Mir Muhammad Amin. He was a shia from Persia and had been appointed as the faujdar of Bayana initially. Later, he joined the Irani group in the Mughal court and assisted in destroying the influence of Sayyid brothers. Consequently, the Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah (1719-1748) was pleased to grant him a mansab of five thousand Zats and three thousand horses.

  • His mansab was raised to seven thousand Zats later and the title of Burhan-ul-Mulk was bestowed upon him. He was also made the subahdar of Agra from where he was transferred to Awadh two years later in 1720.

  • Muhammad Shah called him to Delhi to fight against Nadir Shah in 1739. Later, to escape humiliation, he committed suicide in 1739. But, before his death, he had converted Awadh into an independent Muslim state.

  • After the death of Saadat Khan, his nephew Safdarjang became the next ruler of Awadh. The Mughal Emperor Ahmad Shah (1748-1754) appointed him as his wazir and gave him the area of Allahabad. Thus, he came to be popularly called as Nawah-Waar of Awadh. He died after an unsuccessful resistance to the imperial forces in 1754.

  • Safdarjang’s son Shuja-ud-daula succeeded him to the throne. Like his father, he too was nominated as the wazir of the Mughal Empire. However, he sided with Ahmad Shah Abdali in the Third Battle of Panipat. Later, he fought against the British in the battle of Buxar and was defeated.

  • He was defeated,so he had to buy peace by parting with the districts of Allahabad and Kara to the British besides paying a huge war indemnity. He died in 1775. The Nawab of Awadh finally entered into a subordinate alliance with Lord Wellesley in 1801and in 1856 Awadh was merged with the British Empire in India.


  • Murshid Quli Khan became the diwan of Bengal in 1700. After the death of Aurangzeb, he shifted his base from Dacca Murshidabad in 1707. A few years later he was appointed as the subahdar of Bengal, he also gained the diwani of Orissa.

  • After Murshid Quli Khan. his son-in-law Shuja-ud-din was appointed as the subahdar of Bengal and Orissa. In 1733. Bihar was also added to his charge. He ruled the large province till 1739.

  • After him, his son Sarfaraz Khan assumed the charge of the province. But in 1740, the Deputy Governor of Bihar, Alivardi Khan rebelled against him and seized power by putting him to death.

  • During his reign, the Marathas continuously attacked Bengal forcing him to enter into a treaty in 1751 under which Alivardi Khan agreed to pay to the Marathas an annual chauth of 12 lakhs rupees and the right to collect revenues from Orissa. Alivardi breathed his last in 1756 after which his grandson (daughter’s son) Mirza Muhammad Siraj-ud-daula became the Nawab of Bengal at the age of 23.

  • But hardly had he ruled for 14 months when he had to face the British army under Lord Clive at Plassey. The battle of Plassey proved fatal for the young Nawab and a boon for the East India Company.


  • Nizam-ul-Mulk Asaf Jah founded the state of Hyderabad in 1724. His original name was Chin Qulich Khan. From 1722 to 1724 he also served as Wazir of the Mughal Emperor and was invested with the title of Nizam-ul-Mulk.
  • However, on account of internal differences with the Emperor he returned to Deccan. There he founded Asafjahi dynasty and administered the state as an independent ruler.
  • After Asaf Jab’s death, Nasir Jang, Muzaffar Jang and Salar Jang became the rulers of Hyderabad one after another. Finally, in 1798. Hyderabad entered into a subsidiary alliance with the British for amino stability.


  • Carnatic was a part of the Mughal. Deccan and as such was under the authority of the Nizam of Hyderabad. But, for all practical purposes, the Nawab of Carnatic was free from the control of the Nizam.
  • Its Nawab Saadutullah Khan had been appointed by the Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah I (1709-1712). After some time, he made his nephew, Dost Ali his successor without the approval of the Nizam.
  •  However, Dost Ali was killed in an encounter with the Marathas in 1740. His son and successor Safdar Ali entered into a treaty with the Marathas but he, too, was murdered.
  • The issue of disputed succession to the throne of Carnatic became a cause of conflict between the English and the French, who were interested in gaining political control over the country they traded with.


  • Since the downfall of the Vijavanagar Empire in 1565, the Wodeyar dynasty was ruling over Mysore. But two ministers of the kimdom, Nanjaraj and Devaraj usurped power early in the 18th century reducing its king Chikka Krishna Raj to a mere puppet.
  • Finding his opportunity in the prolonged wars in which Mysore was involved an army commander named Haider Ali established his de facto authority over the kingdom in 1761.

Haider Ali

  • Haider Ali was born in 1721 at an obscure pace named Budikot of of Polar district in Mysore. Though an illiterate, Haider Alt could earn the favour of Nanjaraj through his military powers and diplomatic skills. Thus, he was appointed as the faujdar of Dindigul in 1755. Later, the jagir of Bangalore was also given to him.

  • Soon he was promoted as the commander-in-chief of the Mysore army. After the death of Nanjaraj, he finally became the Sultan of Mysore. Haider Ali’s first major tasks was the reorganisation of the Mysore army. He took steps to train his army on European lines and preferred infantry to equestrian troops. He set up a modern artillery. Medical aid was made available to the fighting soldiers.

  • During 1761-1763, he won Sera, Hoskote, Dod, Bellapur, Nandidurg, Gudibanda, Kodikonda etc. During this period lie also conquered the important town of Bednur and renamed it as Haider Nagar. Later, he won Sunda (Canara) which included the two coastal cities of Coonoor and Mangalore.

  • The Marathas under Peshwa Madhav Rao attacked Mysore and defeated him Around the places of Balam and Coorg in 1764 and the conflict continued for four years forcing Haider Ali to enter a treaty with the Marathas in 1768.

  • The English forces attacked Mysore simultaneously from Bombay and Madras. The people of Malabar sided with the English forces invading Mysore from Bombay. Haider Ali launched an attack on Arcot and appeared at the gates of Madras. The panic-stricken English sued for peace and signed a treaty in 1769.

  • According to this treaty, both sides agreed to return each other territories. The English also committed to help Haider All against a third party invasion. The First Anglo-Mysore War (1767-1769) ended in this manner. This allowed Haider Ali to reconquer Malabar in 1772-1773. In 1774 Coors’ too came under his possession.

  • The relations between the English and Haider All became strained once more when the former refused to side with Haider in his conflict against the Marathas in accordance with the terms of the 1769 treaty. Consequently, the Second Anglo-Mysore War ensued from 1780 to 1784. Haider All attacked Carnatic and captured Arcot. In 1782, however, he inflicted a severe defeat on the English forces compelling them to flee Madras with French assistance. The port of Kadnoor was captured. On 7 December, 1782, Haider Ali passed away due to serious illness leaving the task of continuing the struggle against the English to his son Tipu.

Tipu Sultan

  • Haider Ali was succeeded by his son Tipu as the Sultan of Mysore (1782-1799). The English soldiers in Bednur indulged in public loot. Taking advantage of such a situation, Tipu Sultan massed his army near the fort and recaptured it along with some amore areas.

  • Owing to the treaty signed between the British and the French government and the fear of a Maratha attack in July 1783, Tipu Sultan had to negotiate for peace with the English and sign the Treaty of Mangalore on 11 March, 1784.

  • Under his treaty, Tipu Sultan withdrew his army from Carnatic and the English withdrew theirs from Malabar. Both the parties also promised to release each other’s prisoners of war.

  • Tipu in 1786-87 defeated the combined forces of the Marathas and the Nizam besides occupying some Maratha territories. Soon after, in 1787, he proclaimed himself Padshah at Seringapattam bringing to an end the remaining nominal power of the Hindu Raja of Mysore.

  • He sent two missions to France to manage some aid for the state but without success. Two more missions visited Constantinople unsuccessfully with the same purpose. The Nairs of Malabar revolted against him from 1786 to 1789 and so did the ruler of Coorg.

  • He seized Travancore in 1790. The English sided with the Raja of Travancore and attacked Mysore. The English also received the support of the Nizarn and the Marathas. Thus, the Third Anglo-Mysore War ensued from 1790 to 1792.

  • However, finding the odds weighing heavy against him, Tipu signed the Treaty of Seringapattam with the English in March 1792. Under this treaty, Tipu had to pay a war indemnity of over three crore rupees and send as hostages his two sons to the English. The British on the other hand acquired major parts of Baramahal, Dindigul, coastal Malabar and Coorg.

  • In the way, nearly half of Tipus’ kingdom had to be surrendered to the victorious opponents. Tipu paid all war indemnity and his two sons were set free in 1794. Later, a secret agreement was also planned in 1795-1796. A Jacobin Club was set up at Seringapattam and a ‘Tree of Liberty’ was planted in 1797.

  • Tipu gave impetus to trade and industry in an attempt to strengthen Mysore economically. Trade relations were too established with China, Turkey, Iran and the Arab Countries.

  • Lord Wellesley, supported by the Nizam of Hyderahad and the Marathas in the Fourth Anglo-Mysore War (1799), attacked Mysore from three sides. Seringapattam, the capital of Mysore fell in May 1799, Tipu laid down his life while fighting. This crossning Victory made the English the master of Mysore.


  • Travancore had risen into prominence under its ruler Martanda Verma. He not only conquered nearby areas but also put an end to the Dutch, rule in Kerala. He organised a strong army after the western model and encouraged the manufacture of warships.

  • He undertook many works for public welfare, built roads and canals. He also encouraged the development of Sanskrit and Malayalam languages. Rama Verma, who was equally proficient in language, literature, and fine arts, succeeded Martanda Verma.

  • Travancore’s relations with the British began in 1788 when on August 12, its king signed an agreement with the latter for security against Tipu Sultan. Colonel Collie Macaulay was appointed in Travancore as the first British resident in May 1800. In 1805, Travancore’s subsidiary alliance with the British was firmed up.


  • The ruler of Marwar, Raja Alit Stn, made the first attempt to take advantage of the prevailing political situation and regained control of Marker. This led the Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah I to march against hire and secure his submission.
  • A treaty was concluded between the two and the Raja was recognised as the ruler of Marwar in 1708. Ajit Singh formed an anti-Mughal alliance with the Raja of Jaipur and Durga Dass Rathor the same year.
  • Hussain Ali, the Commander­in-chief of the Mughal forces attacked Jodhpur in 1714 and forced Ajit Singh to sue for peace by marrying one of his daughters with Farrukh Siyar.Later, the Saiyid brothers tried to win over Ajit Singh to their side and appointed him as the governor of Ajmer and Gujarat. But soon, Ajit Singh became a victim to internal disturbance and treachery and was killed by his son Bakht Singh.


  • The ruler of Amer (Jaipur) was Sawai Jai Singh (1699-1743). In 1721, the anti-Saiyid party appointed him as governor of Agra. During the rule of Emperor Muhammad Shah, he was also given the charge of administering Gujarat.
  • Sawai Jai Singh built the city and fort of Jaipur and made it his capital. He built five observatories, where special arrangements were made to study astronomy. He drew a set of tables to help in astronomical observations.
  • He had Euclid’s ‘Elements of Geometry’ and several works on Trigonometry translated into Sanskrit. He enforced a law to make the people reduce expenditure on the marl-rages of their daughters.


  • Under the sacred leadership of Guru Gobind Singh (1666-1708), the tenth and the last guru, the Sikh Khalsa was formed instilling a strong martial spirit in the community in 1699.

  • Banda Bahadur (a trusted disciple of Guru Gobind Singh) fought several times against the Mughals for 1708 to 1715, but he was arrested along with hundreds of his followers. He was paraded on the roads of Delhi in a very humiliating manner and then killed mercilessly.

  • The invasions of Nadir Shah and Ahmad Shah Abdali weakened the Mughal power and provided the Sikhs with an opportunity to unite. The Dal Khalsa was constituted by Karpur Singh and 12 Sikh confederations (mists) were formed in Punjab. Each mist had a definite area of land.

Ranjit Singh

  • One of these wrists was Sukarchakiya. The chief of this mist was Maharaja Ranjit Singh. He was born on 2 November, 1780 in the house of a famous chief, Mahan Singh of Gujranwala (now in Pakistan). He conquered Lahore in 1799. In 1805, he also snatched Amritsar from the Bhangi misl.

  • In 1809, he signed the Treaty of Amritsar with the British under which he accepted the East India Company’s greater right over the Cis-SutleI (Malwa) territories­ In a few years, Maharaja Ranjit Singh took over Multan. Kashmir, anti Peshawar also. He achieved these victories with the active support of his brave commander Hari Singh Nalwa. Maharaja Ranjit Singh passed away in 1839.

  • He trained his army on European lines with the help of French officers Ventura and Allard. His court was always full of Indian and foreign dignitaries. Hindus, Muslims, and French officers adorned most of the important posts in the kingdom. Fakir Aziz-ud-din was his Foreign Minister. The Dogra brothers occupied a very respectable position in the Lahore court. Dina Nath was the Finance Minister of the Maharaja.


  • The Assamese, from Bakhtiyar Khilji - the general of Qutbuddin Aibak (1206) to Aurangzeb’s (1707) period, defeated their invaders 18 times. Lachit Barphunkan, a great warrior of this area defeated the Mughals in 1670.

  • The Ahom ruler Rudra Singha (1694-1714) was considered as Shivaji of this part of the country. In 1792, the British made their first entry into Assam. In 1826, after the First Anglo-Burmese War, under the Treaty of Yandaboo, the British recognised the independence of Manipur and along with the lower Burma occupied the territories of Assam, Cachhar and Jayantiya.

  • From 1824 to 1874, this area remained a part of the Bengal Presidency. From 1874 to 1905, a Chief Commissioner administered the area. In 1905, when Bengal was partitioned. the area became a part of East Bengal and remained so until 1912. From 1912 and 1921, the area was again kept larder the administration of a Chief Commissioner. Finally, from 1921 to 1947, the area remained under a Governor.


  • In 1715, a Jai kingdom was established in Bharatpur near Delhi. Jat leaders Churaman and his nephew Badan Singh were the founder rulers of this kingdom.
  • At a place called Thun, a strong fort was built. During the period of Suraj Mal (1756-1763), the adopted son of Badan Singh, the kingdom became more powerful.

Subsidiary Alliance

  • Subsidiary Alliance was a system devised by Lord Wellesley in 1798. All those who entered into such an alliance with the British had to accept certain terms and conditions:
  • The British would be responsible for protecting their ally from external and internal threats to their power.
  • In the territory of the ally, a British aimed contingent would be stationed.
  • The ally would have to provide the resources for maintaining this contingent.
  • The ally could enter into agreements with other rulers or engage in warfare only with the permission of the British.

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