Overall Impact of Britishers on Indian Society

Mains Marks Booster     2nd August 2023        

Positive Impacts:

  1. Modern Education: Various commissions like Hunter, Raleigh, etc. for education reforms.
  2. Infrastructure Development: Construction of railways, roads, bridges, and ports. For example, Dalhousie changed the map of India by introducing telegraph, Railways.
  3. Legal and Administrative Reforms: They laid the foundation for a more organized governance system in India through codification of laws, rule of law, etc.
  4. Technological Advancements: Modern machinery and scientific knowledge led to growth of industries and agriculture. Eg: Engineering College in 1847 and Agricultural College at Pusa 1905.

Negative Impacts:

  1. Economic Exploitation: They imposed heavy taxes and extracted raw materials from India. Charter Act of 1833 further opened the Indian market.
  2. Social Disruption: The introduction of land policies and the Zamindari system caused widespread impoverishment leading to various riots like Deccan riots in 1875 
  3. Cultural Suppression: As seen through Macaulay's minutes of 1835 which favoured anglicists (Modern education) and his downward filtration theory.
  4. Political Subjugation: Indians were subjected to discriminatory laws and were excluded from political participation. Eg: Arms Act of 1878, Illbert Bill controversy, etc.
  5. Divide and Rule: They exploited divisions between different communities to perpetuate their rule. Ex: Bengal division 1905, separate electorates, etc.
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