Friday, May 30, 2014

net benefits of British rule?

On the other hand, for the conquered peoples, British rule was an unparalleled blessing. For the first and only time in their histories, they had a government that tried – and generally tried with success – to be just and moderate. India in particular gained from British rule. It got a reasonably honest administration, and the benefits of English law and of western science and education. No one who looks at India under Aurangzebe and under Queen Victoria can regard the change as other than for the best for the great majority of the Indian people. Seen purely from the right of the conquered peoples to life, liberty and property, the only disadvantage of British rule was that it finally came to an end. And this is the truth even taking into account the bloodshed of the initial conquests and of the maintenance of British rule. Every imperial power that ever existed has governed by the sword. No other has ever unsheathed the sword so reluctantly and with so many compensating benefits.


  1. I agree, despite the off cited example of the Bengal famine. The only part I disagree is that it is bad it came to an end. No. Both the Raj and the independence that followed were good for the majority of Indians.

  2. Disagree entirely. It assumes Indians could not have been able to set up a Colonial law & order system without the British (evidence around the world would tell me otherwise).Transition to 'modern' age was inevitable- paths were many- some desirable, others not. Being a colonial subject and looted, right and centre through a tiny clique of Zamindaars was the worst possible option but thats what happened.

    It might interest you that Large scale Famines that were recurrent feature of British rule, ended with India's independence.