The modern history of India roughly begins with the end of the Mughal Empire. After the last able Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb died, India was fragmented into a number of small petty kingdoms. There was chaos and confusion all over the country with almost every other king fighting for control of territories. This attracted foreigners who came promptly to India by establishing trade links and draining away the resources. The Europeans were particularly interested in spice trade with India and the Dutch monopolized this area. This led to a series of interesting changes in the Indian sub-continent. Read about modern Indian history in a concise version. Our related section shall give you detailed information.
The British came to know of the abundant resources in India and the
trade links with other countries. The 17th century saw fierce
competition between different European companies. By the end of the 18th
century, the British conquered all and established their company in
India. With time, they acquired political power and secured a place in
the administrative affairs of the country. They established themselves
firmly over the Indian sub continent and brought about many changes in
political, economic and social aspects of the country.
The Indians however, were not open for the idea of a foreign power
ruling them and imposing their beliefs and faith on them. Once they
acquired full control of political power, they started to drain India of
all the wealth and resources. Natural resources and labor was exploited
mercilessly. People became restless and by the mid 19th century, they
revolted against the British for the first time. Popularly known as the
revolt of 1857, this Sepoy Mutiny made Indians realize that they were
not weak and could stand up against the British with unity and
organization. The revolt was crushed ruthlessly by the British but it
made an impact on the Indians.
After the end of the First World War, the British imperialism increased
in India and that gave birth to nation wide agitations against the
British. By the end of 19th century, the Indians formed their own
political party called Indian National Congress which worked with the
British for the benefits of the Indians. The British did not acknowledge
the needs of the Indians and Congress and slowly the Congress turned
Great leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Lala Lajpat Rai,
Bhagat Singh, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, etc. strived and sacrificed
their lives for the freeing the nation from the clutches of the British.
Many nationalist movements were launched in which the nation stood
together as one and finally was successful in driving the British away.
India gained her independence from the British on 15th August, 1947.
British Rule in India
The British rule over India changed the course of history in India. The British came to India at the start of the seventeenth century. This was the time when the British East India Company was established in India to break the Dutch monopoly over spice trade.
East India Company
The British East India Company was chartered by Queen Elizabeth I for developing trade and commerce with Asia. The principle cause for introducing the British East India Company was to break the monopoly of the Dutch in spice trade with the East Indies. The English East India Company established its first factory in the year 1611 at Machilipatnam located in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
Indian National Congress
The Indian National Congress was founded in the year 1885. The first session of Congress was presided over by Womesh Chandra Banerjee who was also elected as the first president of Indian National Congress party. Around seventy reputed delegates that included educationalists, lawyers, journalists etc. attended the first session of the congress when it was established.
Revolt of 1857
One of the primary and severe outbursts of resentment against the British rule came in the form of the Indian revolt of 1857. This revolt followed the battles of Plassey and Buxar and the main cause was resentment against setting up of British rule in Bengal. It is called the first war of independence by many historians though it is a debatable topic.
Gandhi in Freedom Struggle
One of the greatest men in the history of India is unarguably Mahatma Gandhi. The way he gave shape and character to India's freedom struggle is worthy of a standing ovation. He sacrificed his own life for the sake of his country. The respect that he earned for himself despite leading a simple lifestyle is much appreciable. Mahatma Gandhi played a pivotal role in the freedom struggle of India.