Examine the policy of Subordinate Union towards Princely States. Account for the shift from the policy of Subordinate Isolation. (200 words)

Policy of subordinate union towards Princely states (1858-1935)

  • The policy of annexation was abandoned and accepted the right to adopt heir after the Queen’s Proclamation was announced in 1858. The change in policy was due to the loyal attitude of the ruling princes during the revolt of 1857-58 which had amply demonstrated that princes could be used in near future to create problem.
  • The authority of princes over their territory was not accepted as their right but as a gift from the paramount of power. The Indian princes got immunity from the policy of annexation at the cost of their status.
  • After 1858 the fiction of the authority Mughal Emperor came to an end.
  • The Queen adopted the title of Kaiser-I-Hind and forth as the unquestioned ruler and paramount power in India.
  • The government of India exercised the right to interfere in the internal sphere of Indian states as well as external control over them.
  • The company annexed states whenever and whichever possible. Lord Dalhousie annexed states like Satara, Nagpur etc by Doctrine of lapse.
  • Lord Curzon cleared that princes exercises their control as agents of the crown. Curzon’s approach was of the view that the Princes were required to side by side with the Governor General of India.
  • All the above schemes resulted in an integrated Indian political system. Further the Chamber of Princes divided the Indian states into three categories:-
  • Directly represented
  • Represented through representatives
  • Jagirs or Feudal holdings.
  • The shift was made to take princes in confidence as under the policy of sub-ordinate isolation.

This policy of sub-ordinate union was adopted to use these princely states as break waters in political storms if arise in future.

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