An Era of Darkness
In 1930, American historian and philosopher Will Durant wrote that Britain’s ‘conscious and willful bleeding into India an era of darkness was the greatest crime in history’. He wasn’t the only one to condemn the greed and cruelty of British rule, and his assessment was not exaggerated. Famines, epidemics, community uprisings and genocide, such as the War of Independence of 1857 and the retaliatory killings after the 1919 Amritsar Massacre, resulted in nearly 35 million Indian deaths as a result of acts of commission and negligence by British forces. In addition to Indian deaths, British rule impoverished India by begging for faith. When the East India Company took over India, in the post-Mughal chaos, India’s share of world GDP was 23%. When the British left it was just over 3 percent.
The British Empire of India began in 1600 as the East India Company, founded by decree of Queen Elizabeth I, trading silk, spices and other lucrative Indian commodities. In a century and a half, the company has gained undeniable power in India. In 1757, under the command of Robert Clive, the company defeated the Bengal ruler Nawab Siraj-ud-Daula at Plassey, with superior artillery and far superior deception. I did. Years later, Shah Alam II, the young and weakened emperor of the Mughal Empire, was ordered to issue an edict replacing his revenue manager with the head of the company. An era of darkness
In the decades that followed, the British government-backed East India Company expanded its control over much of India by combining extortion, double trading, and blatant corruption backed by violence and dominant power. This situation continued until 1857, when large numbers of corporate Indian soldiers launched the first large-scale revolt against colonial rule. After the defeat of the rebels, they ruled the country more ostensibly until 1947, when the British royal family came to power and India achieved independence. In this explosive book, best-selling author Shashi Tharoor reveals with a keen eye, impeccable research, and brand wit how miserable British rule is for India. He undermines the claims of the West in the many ways the colonists exploited India: the spillover of national resources to Britain, the destruction of India’s textile, steel and shipping industries, and the negative transformation of agriculture. An Indian defender of the Empire for the advantages of British rule, including democracy, political freedom, rule of law, and railroads. Some indisputable advantages, such as English, tea, and crickets, were actually introduced for the benefit of the colonists, not for the benefit of the colonists. Well-written and passionately argued, An Era of Darkness will help clear up many misconceptions about one of the most controversial periods in Indian history.
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