Causes of Revolt - a product of character and policies of colonial rule.
- heavy taxation under new revenue settlement - so peasants depended on money lenders
- summary evictions when defaulted
- discriminatory tariff policy against Indian products
- destruction of traditional handicrafts industry
- annexation of Indian states
- discriminated tariff policy
- absence of concomitant industrialisation on modern lines hit peasants, artisans
- Zamindars - unable to work, ashamed to beg, condemned to penury
- greedy policy of aggrandisement
- effective control
- subsidiary alliance
- doctrine of lapse
- Absentee sovereignty ship character of British rule
Socio religious causes
- British interference in socio-religious affairs of Indian public
- sati abolition
- widow remarriage
- women education
- Religious disability act(change in religion don't debar from inheriting)
Military causes - peasant in uniform
- discontent among sepoys for
- Economic - No Bhatta in Sindh or Punjab
- Psychological - annexation of Awadh
- Religious reasons - crossing seas(1956 - Lord canning's general service enlistment), Enfield rifle, bone dust in atta
- Coupled with a long history of revolts
- During Afghan war(1838-42)
- Corruption esp among police, petty officials and lower courts
Beginning and spread
- Meerut 58km in Delhi on May 10, 1857
- Earlier incident
- 19th native infantry at Berhampur refused Enfield rifle
- 34th native infantry, Mangal Pandey fired sergeant major at Barrackpore
- 7th Awadh regiment defied its officers
- A day before 90 men in 3rd Native cavalry refused greased cartridges
- Aged and powerless Bahadur Shah Zafar proclaimed emperor
Centres of Revolt and Leaders
- Delhi - General Bakht Khan
- Kanpur - Nana Saheb(Dhondu Pant) adopted son of the last Peshwa, Baji Rao II - Sir Hugh Wheeler surrendered to him
- Lucknow - Begum Hazrat Mahal - Colin Campbell recovered it later
- Bareilly - Khan Bahadur, descendant of Ruler of Rohilkhand.
- Bihar - Kunwar Singh(70), Zamindar
- Faizabad - Maulvi Ahmadullah, madras native
- Jhansi - Rani Laxmibai, Dalhousie refused her adopted son to throne after death of Raja Gangadhar Rao bcos of DOL - Tantia tope(Ramachandra Pandurang Tope) helped her
- Baghpat - Shah Mal
Suppression of revolt
- Lt Hudson shot the princes
- Bahadur Shah exiled to Rangoon
- Nanda Saheb escaped to Nepal
- Tantia Tope escaped to central India but was captured and hanged
- Manikarnika Tambe killed by Sir Hugh Rose
- Kunwar singh, bakht Khan, Khan Bahadur Khan, Roa Sahib, Maulvi Ahmadullah were all dead
The British Resistance
- Delhi - Lieutenant Willoughby, John Nicholson, Lieutenant Hudson
- Kanpur - Sir Hugh Wheeler, Sir Colin Campbell
- Lucknow - Henry Lawrence, Brigadier Inglis, Henry Havelock, James Outram, Sir Colin Campbell
- Jhansi - Sir Hugh Rose
- Benaras - Colonel James Neill
Causes of Failure
- Limited territorial(north and central India)(1/4) and social base(1/10).
- Crucial support of certain sections of Indian public to British authorities.
- Big zamindars "break waters to storm"
- Modern educated Indians saw revolt as backward looking
- Lack of resources as compared to those of the British.
- Lack of coordination and a central leadership
- Lack of a coherent ideology and a political perspective.
Hindu -Muslim unity factor
- Bahadur Shah Zafar supported by Hindu soldiers
- Immediate ban on cow slaughter
- Nana Saheb had Azimullah as his aid
- Jhansi had afghan soldiers
- R.C. Majumdar and S.N. Sen - "Not an organised 'national' revolt"
- R.C. Majumdar - "Neither first, nor National nor War of Independence"
- V.D. Savarkar - "War of independence"
- Eric Stokes - "Elitist in character"
- Lawrence and Seeley - "Mere sepoy mutiny"
- T.R. Holmes - "A conflict between civilisation and barbarism"
- James Outram - "A Mohammedan conspiracy making capital of Hindu grievances"
- Percival Spear - Three phases of the revolt
- Not quite the first war of independence but sowed the seeds of nationalism and quest for freedom from alien rule.
- Crown took over
- Company rule abolished
- Queen's Proclamation in 1 Nov 1858 altered administration
- Era of annexation and expansion ended
- Army reorganised on 'division and counterpoise'1:2 instead of 1:5.
- Racial hatred deepened