Revolt of 1857

Context:

  • The skeletons of 282 Indian soldiers who participated in the country’s First War of Independence in 1857 were found during the excavation near Amritsar.

Background:

  • The revolt of 1857 marked the formal start of the fight for independence from British colonial control.
  • The British East India Company’s rule came to an end during this battle of independence.

Reason:

  • The introduction of the ‘Enfield’ rifle was the immediate factor. Before inserting the cartridge into the pistol, it had to be chewed off.
  • The cartridge was lubricated with either pig or cow fat, according to Indian sepoys. This was in violation of Hindu and Muslim beliefs. As a result, they resisted using the ‘Enfield’ weapon.
  • The soldiers were enraged at the British, therefore this was a flashpoint. This was thought to be the immediate cause of the 1857 rebellion.

Religious & Social Causes:

  • Racism, or racial discrimination, was thought to be a major cause of the 1857 insurrection, in which Indians were exploited and prohibited from interacting with Europeans.
  • Whites began intervening in Indians’ religious and cultural concerns, as well as torturing them.

Political:
  • The British expansion had resulted in the proliferation of unfair policies, resulting in the loss of power of the Nawabs and Zamindars residing throughout India.
  • The introduction of unfair policies such as the policy of trade and commerce, the policy of indirect subordination (subsidiary alliance), the policy of war and annexation, the policy of direct subordination (doctrine of lapse), and the policy of misgovernance (through which Awadh was annexed) hampered the interests of the rulers of the native states greatly, and they became victims of British expansionism one by one.
  • As a result, those monarchs who had lost their nations to the British were naturally anti-British and sided with them during the revolution.

Source: THE HINDU.

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