India (1600-1850)


British India : Corporate Takeover and Colonization

For about a year or so, I  have been reading about Indian history (1600-1850), focusing especially on how the British colonized India during that period.  My readings coincided with the 2016 presidential campaign, which I closely followed.  British colonization was made possible primarily because of disunity, greed, selfishness, intolerance and general lack of concern for public welfare in India at that time.   Unfortunately,  I have observed similar conditions in the United States for sometime now, which boiled over during this election cycle.  Clearly they do not bode well for the future of  the country.   For example, Time magazine in naming in the incoming president as the 2016 Person of the Year added the cautionary subtitle: Donald Trump, President of the Divided United States.

In these writings, I shall discuss how a business corporation named East India Company (EIC) that came to trade with India became its ruler over a period of about 250 years (1600-1850). In this discussion, I shall focus on the  prevailing political circumstances in India and policies of the EIC that allowed this corporation to first obtain ruling power over a part of the country (Bengal) in 1757 and then gradually (1757-1857) extend this power over the entire country ending in colonization by the British Crown (1858).  In this discussion, I shall also comment on the lessons for America from that period in Indian history.  In this connection, see a previous post of mine.


Tentatively, here are the topics I will be covering in the months to come:

Topic 1: Brief introduction to 17th century India when the EIC first arrived
Topic 2 : East India Company (EIC)  Becomes Ruler of  Bengal in 1757
Topic 3:  Golden Era of Mughal Empire (1535 – 1707) and its Decline (1707-1857)
Topic 4:  Indian Rebellion to EIC Power (1857) and Takeover by British Crown
Topic 5:  EIC & Opium Wars  – Hong Kong Becomes Part of the British Empire (1841-1997)
Topic 6 Political, Social, and Educational Impact of EIC rule on India
Topic 7: Lessons for America (to be integrated with the above topics, where pertinent)