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Aftermath of the War of Independence

Aftermath of the War of Independence

The Indians suffered a disappointing and discouraging defeat while a glorious victory for the White men prolonged their rule. For the subjugated Indians repercussions were rather more severe. The Mughal rule came to an end with the dethroning of the last Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar. He was arrested during the course of the war and sent to Rangoon, Burma where he was sentenced to life imprisonment. His family members including twenty-four princes were nastily executed by the soldiers of the East India Company. The second upshot was windup of the control and command of the East Indian Company in India. The British Charter of 1852 stated that the government of India was entrusted to the Company by the English crown. And since the war had left the impression that the Company was no longer capable of keeping it safe, the government of India was personally taken over by the Queen of England who would appoint a Viceroy in India to represent the crown. The Board of Directors and the Board of Control of the Company were dissolved and instead a council of fifteen members was appointed with Secretary of State for India as its head.

Another point the crown had realized was the obvious mistrust between the Company and the local landlords. The unlawful and corrupt activities of the Company in capturing all the land of India and its resources had enraged the lords of India who collaborated with the revolutionaries. Thus contrary to the policy of the East India Company the crown tried to develop a relationship of trust and confidence with the Indian masses. It was assured that England was no longer interested in capturing the Indian land anymore and that in the future all the agreements singed with the Indian lords would be duly acknowledged. The heirless rulers were also given free hand to adopt males as their successors. The motive was to eventually gain their trust and support.

The crown believed that primarily the Muslims had initiated the revolt against the British rule. For that reason they put all the blame on the Indian Muslims and took most of the revenge from them. Most of the Muslims in the government services were dismissed. Except the betrayers all the Muslims were ruthlessly looted and killed. The aim was to divest the Muslim community of their political rights. The Muslims in repulsion also utterly disgusted the British and rejected not only the White people but also all the new things that were introduced by them. In the long run that proved to be a devastating trend that made the Muslims absolutely depressing, desolate and dismal community mainly because they kept themselves quite aloof from the modern education and thus remained awkwardly uneducated and unfortunately backward. The Hindus on the other hand joined hands with the new government and became well-educated and prosperous. This also caused a permanent rift in the Hindu-Muslim unity since the Muslims thought that although Hindus fought with them but it was only the Muslims who were paying the price. Eventually the second half of the nineteenth century India witnessed the rise of nationalism giving rise to two-nation theory that ultimately resulted in the partition of India and creation of Pakistan.

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