Ans. In 1849, Governor-General Dalhousie announced that after the death of Bahadur Shah Zafar, the family of the king would be shifted out of the Red Fort and given another place in Delhi to reside in.
Ans. All ruling chiefs of the country were assured that their territory would never be annexed in future. They were allowed to pass on their kingdoms to their heirs, including adopted sons. However, they were made to acknowledge the British Queen as their Sovereign Paramount.
Ans. It had started in 1850 and could be suppressed only by the mid-1860s. Thousands of labouring, poor people were led by Hong Xiuquan to fight for the establishment of the Heavenly Kingdom of Great Peace. This was known as the Taiping Rebellion.
Ans. Bakht Khan, a soldier from Bareilly, took charge of a large force of fighters who came to Delhi.
Ahmadullah Shah, a maulvi from Faizabad raised a huge force of supporters and came to Lucknow to fight the British.
Ans. The Company allowed Christian missionaries to function freely in its domain and even own land and property. In 1850, a new law was passed to make conversion to Christianity easier. Many Indians felt that the British were destroying their religion; thus, revolted against the British rule.
Ans. Delhi was recaptured from the rebel forces in September 1857. The last Mughal emperor, Bahadur Shah Zafar was tried in court and sentenced to life imprisonment. His sons were shot dead before his eyes. He and his wife Begum Zinat Mahal were sent to prison in Rangoon in October 1858. Bahadur Shah Zafar died in the Rangoon jail in November 1862.
Ans. The British believed that Indian society had to be reformed. Laws were passed to stop the practice of sati and to encourage the remarriage of widows. English-language education was actively promoted. Many Indians believed that the British were meddling in their social customs and their traditional way of life; thus, revolted against the British rule.
Ans. When British established political power in India:
i. The Nawabs and Rajas lost their authority and honour.
ii. British Residents were stationed in all the courts, the freedom of the rulers reduced, their armed forces disbanded and territories taken away by stages.
Ans. The Mughal dynasty had ruled over a very large part of the country. Most smaller rulers and chieftains controlled different territories on behalf of the Mughal ruler. Threatened by the expansion of British rule, many of them felt that if the Mughal emperor could rule again, they too would be able to rule their own territories once more, under Mughal authority.
Ans. The British tried their best to win back the loyalty of the people.
i. They announced rewards for the loyal landlords who would be allowed to continue to enjoy traditional rights over their lands.
ii. Those who had rebelled were told that they submitted to the British, and if they had not killed any white people, they would remain safe and their rights and claims to land would not be denied.
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