Nawabs of Bengal – Battle of Plassey & Battle of Buxar

thr Battle of Plassey

  • From 1717 three successive Islamic dynasties – Nasiri, Afshar and Najafi – ruled what was then known as Bengal.

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battle of plassey battle of buxar
Hazarduari Palace, Murshidabad

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Nasiri Dynasty (1717-40)

Murshid Quli Khan

  • Murshid Quli Khan was born in a Hindu Brahmin family in the Deccan Plateau.
  • Aurangzeb sent him to Bengal as the divan in 1700
  • In 1717, Murshid Quli Khan was appointed as the Nawab Nazim of Murshidabad by Farrukhsiyar.
  • Murshid Quli Khan changed the jagirdari system to the mal jasmani, which would later transform into the zamindari system
  • Aurangzeb gave him permission to rename the city Murshidabad.
  • Murshid Quli Khan maintained strict control over East India Company from abusing the privileges granted to the company
    • Mughal Farman of 1691 by Aurangzeb
    • Mughal Farman of 1717 by Farukh Siyar

 

battle of plassey battle of buxar

Shuja-ud-Din Muhammad Khan

  • He was son-in-law of Murshid Quli Khan
  • His successor was Sarfaraz Khan

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Nizamat Imambara
Nizamat Imambara

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Afshar Dynasty (1740-57)

Alivardi Khan

  • Shuja-ud-Din promoted Muhammad Ali to Faujdar of Rajmahal and entitled him as Alivardi Khan.
  • In 1740, in the Battle of Giria, Alivardi Khan defeated and killed Sarfaraz Khan.
  • Alivardi Khan also used the title Nizam.
  • He is known to have introduced artillery on large movable platforms, which were driven by oxen.
  • At the Battle of Burdwan in 1747, Alivardi Khan defeated Maratha forces.

 

Siraj ud Daulah

  • His full name was Mirza Muhammad Siraj ud-Daulah.
  • Siraj ud Daulah becames Nabab in April 1756.
  • He was the last independent Nawab of Bengal.
  • His charges against the company were mainly threefold.
    • They strengthened the fortification around the Fort William without any intimation and approval
    • Abused the trade privileges, which caused heavy loss of customs duties.
    • Company gave shelter to some of his officers who were against Nabab.
  • Siraj ud Daulah captured Kolkata and renamed as Alinagar from the British in June 1756
  • Black Hole of Calcutta was a small prison in Fort William where troops of Siraj ud-Daulah held British prisoners of war for one fatal night on 20 June 1756.
  • Feb 1757 the Nawab’s men were difited by a small English force in a night attack under Robert Clive.
  • This  incident forced Siraj ud Daulah to come to under Treaty of Alinagar. 
  • The treaty was violated by the conquest of Chandranagore (French), by the British in March 1757.
  • A conspiracy was started by Mir Jafar, Rai Durlabh, Yar Lutuf Khan and Omichund (Amir Chand), Jagat Seth, Krishna Chandra, and several officers in the army.

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battle of plassey

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The Battle of Plassey

  • The Battle of Plassey was a decisive victory of the British East India Company over the Nawab of Bengal and his French allies
  • The battle fought at Plassey, Murshidabad in Bengal on 23 June 1757, on the banks of the Hooghly River.
  • Siraj-ud-Daulah was executed on 2 July 1757 by Mohammad Ali Beg under orders from Mir Meerun, son of Mir Jafar in Namak Haram Deorhi.
  • Commanders and leaders in The Battle of Plassey
    • Robert Clive, Major Kilpatrick, Major Grant, Major Eyre Coote, Captain Gaupp
    • Nawab Siraj ud-Daulah, Diwan Mohanlal, Mir Madan, Mir Jafar Ali Khan (defector), Yar Lutuf Khan (defector), Rai Durlabh (defector), Monsieur Sinfray (France)

 

 

battle of plassey battle of buxar

Najafi Dynasty

Mir Jafar (1757 – 1760 & 1763 – 1765)

  • 1st Najafi Nawab of Bengal with support from the British East India Company.
  • Mir Jafar granted the right to free trade in Bengal, Bihar and Orissa, and the zamindari of the 24 Parganas to the British
  • He also paid them a sum of Rs 17.7 million
  • Reign of Mir Jafar saw the beginning of the drain of wealth from India to Britain.
  • He made futile efforts to replace the English by the Dutch.
  • The Dutch were defeated by the English in Battle of Chinsurah, 1759.

 

 

Mir Qasim (1760-63)

  • Mir Qasim granted the zamindari of Burdwan, Midnapore and Chittagong to the British officials
  • He transferred his capital from Murshidabad to Monger (1762)
  • Mir Qasim abolished all duties on internal trade against British wishes, to protect the Indian traders (1763).

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battle of buxar

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The Battle of Buxar

  • The Battle of Buxar (21 Oct, 1764) was fought between the British and the 3 allies.
    • Mir Qasim
    • Shuja-ud-daula of Awadh
    • Shah Alam II
  • This battle ended in the defeat of the allies by the British forces under Major Hector Munro.
  • Buxar is a “small fortified town” in Bihar.
  • The Battle of Buxar was brought to an end by the Treaty of Allahabad in 1765.

 

The Treaty of Allahabad

  • Robert Clive concluded two important treaties at Allahabad in Aug 1765 with
    • Nawab of Awadh
    • Mughal Emperor, Shah Alam II
  • Nawab Shuja-ud-Daula agreed to surrender Allahabad and Kara to Emperor Shah Alam II.
  • Shah Alam II agreed to granting farman of diwani of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa to the East India Company in lieu of an annual payment of Rs 26 lakh
  • Military defence, police, and administration of justice power of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa went to East India Company.

 

 

Dual Government in Bengal (1765-72)

  • Robert Clive introduced the dual system of government in Bengal
  • Rule of the two, Company and the Nawab.
  • Collecting revenues and nizamat (police and judicial functions) came under Company power.
  • Company exercised diwani rights as diwan and nizamat rights through its right to nominate the deputy subahdar.
  • Dual system led to an administrative breakdown and proved disastrous for the people of Bengal.

 

Najm-ud-daula (1765-72)

  • Najm, son of Mir Jafar, was made the nawab in 1765
  • He remained a puppet in the hands of the British during the period of ‘Dual System of Government’.
  • In 1772, he was pensioned off when the Company took over the direct charge of Bengal.

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