The military causes of Sepoy Mutiny primarily led to the outbreak of the 1857 revolt. Leader of the British Conservative Party and future prime minister Benjamin Disraeli argued these objects were signs to rebel and evidence of a conspiracy, and the press echoed this belief. In the decade prior to the rebellion, the BEIC had imposed a "doctrine of lapse" (of Indian leadership succession), and the policy of "subsidiary alliance", both of which deprived many Indian rulers of their customary powers and privileges. Mason, Philip (1974), page 263 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston, Details of the rifle issued as a result of the mutiny, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Causes_of_the_Indian_Rebellion_of_1857&oldid=990241245, All Wikipedia articles written in Indian English, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 23 November 2020, at 16:27. VIEW MORE. which was taken in complete disregard to their religious beliefs. Under the British rule, there was a severe deterioration of the condition of Indian agriculture. [8], Unlike the Madras and Bombay Armies of the BEIC, which were far more diverse, the Bengal Army recruited its regular soldiers almost exclusively amongst the landowning Bhumihars and Rajputs of the Ganges Valley. This took the form of Muslim millenarianism, with preachers in Lucknow foretelling the end of the raj. Historians have identified diverse political, economic, military, religious and social causes of the Indian Rebellion of 1857. Dalhousie had As further evidence, he observes that the Urdu sources of the pre- and post-rebellion periods usually refer to the British not as angrez (the English), goras (whites) or firangis (foreigners), but as kafir (disbeliever) and nasrani (Christians). [2] Author Pramod Nayar points out that by 1851 there were nineteen Protestant religious societies operating in India whose goal was the conversion of Indians to Christianity. Often the British officers treated the sepoys rudely. • The Indian sepoys were looked upon as inferior beings and treated with contempt by their British officers. Christian organisations from Britain had additionally created 222 "unattached" mission stations across India in the decade preceding the rebellion. Underlying grievances over British taxation and recent land annexations by the British East Indian Company (BEIC) also contributed to the anger of the sepoy mutineers, and within weeks, dozens of units of the Indian army joined peasant armies in widespread rebellion. The rifle's cartridges contained 68 grains of FF blackpowder, and the ball was typically a 530-grain Pritchett or a Burton-Minié ball. Mason, Philip (1974), page 264 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. discriminated against their Indian. It was only later on that other elements of society joined the revolt. During the late eighteenth century and the early part of the nineteenth century, the armies of the East India Company, in particular those of the Bengal Presidency, were victorious and indomitable â€” the term "high noon of the sepoy army" has been used by a military historian. Once the first rebellions took place, it was clear to most British commanders that the grievances which led to them were felt throughout the Bengal army and no Indian unit could wholly be trusted, although many officers continued to vouch for their men's loyalty, even in the face of captured correspondence indicating their intention to rebel. According to some historians, the revolt of 1857 was simply a Sepoy’s Mutiny. When soldiers of the Bengal army mutinied in Meerut on May 10, 1857, tension had been growing for some time. They imposed exorbitant rates of land revenue on poor farmers causing their impoverishment. The sepoys' British officers dismissed these claims as rumours, and suggested that the sepoys make a batch of fresh cartridges, and greased these with pig and cow fat. Following Mason, Philip (1974), pages 305-306 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. Join NOW to get access to exclusive study material for best results. [9], Until the 1840s there had been a widespread belief amongst the Bengal sepoys in the iqbal or continued good fortune of the East India Company. This reinforced the belief that the original issue cartridges were indeed greased with lard and tallow. Proportion of Indians in the British Army -. Later, the attitudes of British officers changed with increased intolerance, lack of involvement and unconcern of the welfare of troops becoming manifest more and more. The revolt of 1857 was a combination of political, economic, socio-religious and military causes. Revolt of 1857 – Causes . MILITARY CAUSES. The soldiers performed well on the field of battle in exchange for which they were rewarded with symbolic heraldic rewards such as battle honours in addition to the extra pay or "batta" (foreign pay) routinely disbursed for operations committed beyond the established borders of Company rule. Causes of the Revolt of 1857: (a) Political Causes i. Doctrine of Lapse: Lord Dalhousie successfully annexed many Indian states to the English East India Company. A group of historians and writers has asserted that the Revolt was the result of a widespread and well-organized conspiracy. 10. The Indian soldiers were discriminated. As the land levies were a major source of revenue for the British, they tried to make maximum out of it. 4. Causes of the Revolt of 1857. The forces were divided into three presidency armies: Bombay, Madras, and Bengal. As a result, it became easier for the rebelling They later stood in Chandni Chowk, the main square, and asked the people gathered there, "Brothers, are you with those of the faith? THE IMMEDIATE CAUSE OF THE REVOLT OF 1857 Mason, Philip (1974), pages 291-292 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. C. RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION. Political, Economic, Social and Military causes. The mutiny and great revolt of 1857–59. The musketry books also recommended that, "Whenever the grease around the bullet appears to be melted away, or otherwise removed from the cartridge, the sides of the bullet should be wetted in the mouth before putting it into the barrel; the saliva will serve the purpose of grease for the time being" This meant that biting a musket cartridge was second nature to the Sepoys, some of whom had decades of service in the company's army, and who had been doing musket drill for every day of their service. Another important source of discontent among the Indian rulers was that the British policies of conquest had created significant unrest. Military Causes of the revolt of 1857: • Indian soldiers formed seven-eighth of the total British troops in India. The British deliberately crippled Indian trade and … At other times however the Company directly or indirectly conceded the legitimacy of the sepoy's demands, such as when troops of the Bengal and Madras armies refused to serve in Sindh without batta after its conquest. All rights reserved. The reasons for the failure of the 1857 Revolt are many and can be grouped into Administrative, Military and Political causes. Historians have identified diverse political, economic, military, religious and social causes of the Indian Rebellion of 1857. As they were an integral part of the Indian society, they too suffered the consequences of the oppressive British rule. Saul, David (2003), page 294 "The Indian Mutiny", Penguin Books. The Anglo-Indian historians have greatly emphasised the importance of military grievances and the greased cartridges affair as the most potent causes which led to the great rising of 1857. Higher post in the army were reserved for the British. 3. Indian soldiers were given Enfield rifle, the … Economic and Military Causes of Revolt of 1857. By the first half of the 19th century, the East India Company had brought major portions of India under its control.One hundred years after the Battle of Plassey, anger against the unjust and oppressive British Government took the form of a revolt Following the disarming and disbandment of an additional seventeen Bengal Native Infantry regiments, which were suspected of planning mutiny, only twelve survived to serve in the new post-mutiny army. Mason, Philip (1974), pages 203-204 A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. 2 mins read. Immediate Cause of Revolt. Loading the Enfield often required tearing open the greased cartridge with one's teeth, and many sepoys believed that the cartridges were greased with cow and pig fat. CAUSES OF REVOLT "[26] Their rule in India had begun with the Battle of Plassey in 1757. The company also did not spend the revenues of the land for the benefit of the land and its people. [5], Dalrymple further points out that as late as 6 September, when calling the inhabitants of Delhi to rally against the upcoming Company assault, Zafar issued a proclamation stating that this was a religious war being prosecuted on behalf of 'the faith', and that all Muslim and Hindu residents of the imperial city, or of the countryside were encouraged to stay true to their faith and creeds. of Indian Soldiers -, The East India Company Lord Dalhousies policy of annexation and the Doctrine of lapse had made the Indian rulers angry and insecure. Ruin of the Mercantile Class. Sepoys throughout India were issued with a new rifle, the Pattern 1853 Enfield rifled musket—a more powerful and accurate weapon than the old but smoothbore Brown Bess they had been using for the previous decades. There was rumour about an old prophecy that the company's rule would end after a hundred years. [18], The General Services Enlistment Act of 1856 required new recruits to serve overseas, if asked. [17], Officers of an evangelical persuasion in the company's Army (such as Herbert Edwardes and Colonel S.G. Wheler of the 34th Bengal Infantry) had taken to preaching to their Sepoys in the hope of converting them to Christianity. Related Questions to study. ii. They cannot rise above the rank of Subedar. For instance, once the rebellion was underway, Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar met the sepoys on 11 May 1857, he was told: "We have joined hands to protect our religion and our faith." Causes of 1857 Revolt The issue of greased cartridges and military grievances has been over-emphasized, as the factor for the Revolt of 1857. So, the reason for any revolt or revolution is that masses are not happy by the ruling authority. The Indian soldiers were also sent across the sea which was forbidden as per Hindu religious beliefs. Mason, Philip (1974), page 236 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. Because of all these reasons Kings, Princes, their courtiers and disbanded soldiers an… Some of these units belonged to states allied to the British or recently absorbed into British-administered territory, and of these, two large contingents from the states of Awadh and Gwalior readily joined the growing rebellion. Indian sepoys formed more than 87% of British troops in India. Political Few of these participated in the rebellion, and one contingent in particular (the recently raised Punjab Irregular Force) actively participated on the British side. The Company interfered in the internal matters of Indian States and followed the policy of divide and rule. Military Causes; Low salary and poor prospects of promotion. are three important causes of the revolt of 1857: Queries asked on Sunday & after 7pm from Monday to Saturday will be answered after 12pm the next working day. He also resumed the practice of tax free lands in some areas. The rifling inside the musket barrel ensured accuracy at much greater distances than was possible with old muskets. Although the armies of many Rajas or states which rebelled contained large numbers of guns, the British superiority in artillery was to be decisive in the siege of Delhi after the arrival of a siege train of thirty-two howitzers and mortars. The General Service Due to the need for technical specialists, the artillery units generally had a higher proportion of British personnel. 2 mins read. Dalhousie had also appointed Inam Commission with powers to confiscate land. Causes of 1857 Rebellion May 2020 DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.28146.94408 Project: MILITARY HISTORY Agha H AminAgha H Amin Military Causes: The Revolt of 1857 started as a sepoy mutiny. Causes of Revolt of 1857 The revolt of 1857 was initiated due to various factors which are stated below: Religious & Social Causes – racism or racial discrimination was believed to be a major reason for the revolt of 1857 wherein Indians were exploited and were kept away from mixing with Europeans. 2. British and Indian military drills of the time required soldiers to bite off the end of the Beeswax paper cartridge, pour the gunpowder contained within down the barrel, stuff the remaining paper cartridge into the barrel, ram the paper cartridge (which included the ball wrapped and tied in place) down the barrel, remove the ram-rod, return the ram-rod, bring the rifle to the ready, set the sights, add a percussion cap, present the rifle, and fire. Mason, Philip (1974), pages 186 and 313 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. This seems to have been a very important reason for the spread of the rebellion, keeping in view the speed at which the ignited in many villages in northern India where farmers rushed to get back their unfairly grabbed title deeds. Just before the Rebellion there were over 300,000 sepoys in the army, compared to about 50,000 British. The subsidiary alliance and the Doctrine of Lapse of Dalhousie angered Indian Princes. Brahmins to cross the seas. Some Indians were upset with the draconian rule of the Company who had embarked on a project of territorial expansion and westernisation that was imposed without any regard for historical subtleties in Indian society. What […] Results of revolt of 1857. Eleven of the sepoys were executed and hundreds more sentenced to hard labour. Since the batta made the difference between active service being considered munificent or burdensome, the sepoys repeatedly resented and actively opposed inconsiderate unilateral changes in pay and batta ordered by the Military Audit department. All of the Bengal Native Cavalry regiments and 45 of the infantry units rebelled at some point. When the mood of the sepoys turned against their masters, they remembered Kabul and that the British were not invincible. They too had a number of grievances. Briefly The resumption of tax free land and confiscation of jagirs (the grant or right to locally control land revenue) caused discontent among the jagirdars and zamindars. The Absentee Sovereignty of British means that India was being ruled by the British Government from England. In 1824, there was another mutiny by a regiment ordered overseas in the First Anglo-Burmese War, who were refused transport to carry individual cooking vessels and told to share communal pots. Political: Nana Sahib was refused pension, as he was the adopted son of pesewa Baji Rao II. Social distance between officers and Indian soldiers. Mason, Philip (1974), page 225 "A Matter of Honour", London: Holt, Rhinehart & Winston. The immediate cause of military disaffection was the deployment of the new breech-loading Enfield rifle, the cartridge of which was purportedly greased with pork and beef fat. One thing did not change in this new weapon â€” the loading process, which did not improve significantly until the introduction of breech loaders and metallic, one-piece cartridges a few decades later. This included an increase in the taxation on land. The transfer of the number 66th which was taken away from a regular Bengal Sepoy regiment of the line disbanded over refusal to serve without batta, and given to a Gurkha battalion, was considered by the Sepoy as a breach of faith by the company. 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