Governors-General and Viceroys

Warren Hastings (1772-85)

  •  Governor of Bengal in 1772 for two years.
  •  After enactment of Regulating Act 1773, he became the first Governor-General of Bengal in 1774.
  •  End of Dual system of administration set up by Clive.
  •  Appointment of collectors to manage revenue affairs.
  •  Transfer of the treasury from Murshidabad to Calcutta.
  •  The districts of Allahabad and Kora sold to the Nawab of Awadh.
  •  Regulating Act of 1773.
  •  The Supreme Court was set up at Calcutta in 1774.
  •  The Rohilla war between the Rohillas and the Nawab of Awadh (1774)
  •  The trial and execution of Nand Kumar (1775)
  •  The first Anglo-Maratha war, 1776-82
  •  Treaty of Salbai in 1782.
  •  The second Anglo-Mysore war, 1780-84.
  •  Pitt’s India Act of 1784.
  •  Foundation of Asiatic Society of Bengal by William Jones in 1784.
  •  Hastings was impeached in England, under the charge of taking bribes but later he was acquitted.

Lord Cornwallis (1786-93)

  •  Established lower grade courts and appellate courts.
  •  The Third Anglo-Mysore war, 1790-92.
  •  To suppress bribery, he increased the salaries of the employees of the company and police officers.
  •  Introduction of the permament settlement in Bengal and Bihar.
  •  Introduction of the Cornwallis Code on the basis of distribution of powers in 1793.
  •  Introduction of civil service in India.
  •  Corwnwallis is called the father of Civil Services in India.

Sir John Shore (1793-98)

  •  Famous for his policy of non-intervention.

Lord Wellesley (1798-1805)

  •  Introduction of Subsidiary Alliance system in 1798, to bring Indian states under the control of British political power.
  •  The fourth Anglo-Mysore war (1799).
  •  Treaty of Bassein between Baji Rao II and the English (1802).
  •  The second Anglo-Maratha war (1803-1805).
  •  The first subsidiary treaty was signed with the Nizam of Hyderabad in 1798. 
  •  Hyderabad (1798), Tanjore (1799), Awadh (1801), Peshwa (1802), Bhonsle (1803), Sindhia (1804), Indore (1817), Jaipur and Jodhpur (1818) were brought under the rule of British.
  •  Formation of Madras presidency in 1801.

Sir George Barlow (1805-07)

  •  Mutiny at Vellore in 1806.
  •  Treaty of Amritsar with Ranjit Singh (1809).

Lord Hastings (1813-23)

  •  Ended the policy of non-intervention.
  •  Military operation against the Pindaris (1817-18).
  •  Abolition of Peshwaship and annexation of all his territories in 1818.
  •  Treaty of Sugauli (1818) between the Gurkhas and the English.
  •  Creation of Bombay presidency in 1818.
  •  By 1818, all the Indian territories, except the Punjab and Sindh, had been brought under British control.
  •  Gurkha war (The Anglo-Nepal war, 1814-16).
  •  Abolished the censorship of press.
  •  Ryotwari system in Madras established by the governor Thomas Munro.
  •  Ryotwari and Mahalwari systems introduced in Bombay by Governor Elphinstone.
  •  In the north-western provinces the Mahalwari system was introduced.

Lord William Bentinck (1825-35)

  •  Governor-General of Bengal from 1825 to 1833.
  •  The Charter Act of 1833 passed.
  •  After enactment of the Charter Act of 1833, he became
    the first Governor-General of India.
  •  Known as liberal Governor-General.
  •  Passed various social reform Bills.
  •  Abolition of Sati in 1829.
  •  Suppression of infanticide and child sacrifices.
  •  Suppression of Thuggee, 1829-1835.
  •  English was accepted as the official language of India after recommendations of Macaulay.
  •  First time a law member, Macaulay, was appointed in the executive council.
  •  Opium trade was regularised, licensed and duty paid.
  •  Salaries of civil servants were reduced and so were the allowances of military officers.
  •  In higher courts Persian was replaced by English as the court language.
  •  Established the Agra province in 1834.
  •  Annexation of Mysore, Kachhar and Coorg (Southern Malabar).

Sir Charles Metcalfe (1835-1836)

  •  Called as ‘Liberator of the Indian press’, he removed all the restrictions on the press.

Lord Auckland (1836-42)

  •  First Afghan War (1838-42)

Lord Ellenborough (1842-44)

  •  Annexation of Sindh (1843)

Lord Hardinge I (1844-48)

  •  Suppression of human sacrifices
  •  First Anglo-Sikh War (1845-1846)

Lord Dalhousie (1848-56)

  •  Introduced the Doctrine of Lapse for annexing the dependent states whose ruler died without a natural heir to succeed him.
  •  Some important Indian states — Satara, Uadipur, Jhansi and Nagpur — were annexed by the enforcement of the Doctrine of lapse.
  •  Charles Wood’s Disptach on Indian education was accepted. It is called the Magna Carta of British education.
  •  First railway line between Bombay and Thane opened (1853).
  •  Postal and Telegraph system was established.
  •  First telegraph line between Calcutta and Agra.
  •  A new Post Office Act, 1854 was passed and first-time postage stamps were issued.
  •  Established public works department. The object of this department was the construction and maintenance of canals, roads, bridges etc.
  •  Second Anglo-Sikh War and annexation of Punjab in 1849
  •  Abolition of titles and pensions
  •  Headquarters of the Bengal Artillery were shifted from Calcutta to Meerut.
  •  Simla became the summer capital of India and permanent headquarters of the Army.
  •  Competitive exams of Indian Civil Services were started.
  •  Annexation of Pegu (lower Burma)
  •  The Santhal insurrection in 1855
  •  Gorkha regiment formed
  •  The Charter Act of 1853 passed

Lord Canning (1856-1857)

  •  Universities of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras were set up in 1857.
  •  After the Government of India Act, 1858, the Governor General was called Viceroy.

Lord Canning (1857-1862)

  •  First Viceroy of India
  •  Transfer of Indian administration to the British crown.
  •  Sir Edward Drummond took charge in November, 1860 as the first Auditor General of India.
  •  Indian Council Act of 1861: Through this Act central and provincial legislative council was established.
  •  Official end of Dalhousie’s Doctrine of Lapse in 1859
  •  The Indian Penal Code (1858), Code of Criminal Procedure (1859) and High Court Act (1861) introduced.
  •  Indigo Revolt (1859-60) by the indigo farmers of Bengal

Lord Elgin I (1862-63)

  •  Suppressed the Wahabi Revolt.

Lord John Lawrence (1864-69)

  •  Establishment of high courts at Calcutta, Bombay and Madras in 1865

Lord Mayo (1869-72)

  •  Decentralization of finance
  •  For the first time in India, a census was held in 1871.
  •  A council for statistical survey in India was organised.
  •  He was assassinated by a Pathan in Andaman.
  •  Establishment of Mayo College at Ajmer

Lord North Brook (1872-76)

  •  Kuka movement in Punjab in 1872
  •  Visit of Prince of Wales to India
  •  Abolition of Income Tax

Lord Lytton (1876-80)

  •  Parliament passed the Royal Titles Act of 1876 and queen Victoria got the title of Empress of India.
  •  Vernancular Press Act of 1878 was passed. This act was also called the Gagging Act.
  •  Lord Lytton held a Durbar at Delhi in 1877, where the queen was declared ‘Kaiser-i-Hind’.
  •  A famine committee under Sir Richard Strachey was appointed.
  •  The maximum age limit for candidates of Indian Civil Services (ICS) exams was lowered from 21 years to 19.

Lord Ripon (1880-84)

  •  He was appointed by the Liberal party under Gladstone.
  •  The first Factory Act of 1881.
  •  Repeal of the Vernacular Press Act, 1882.
  •  The first organised census was held in 1881.
  •  Appointment of the Hunter Commission on school education in 1882
  •  The Ilbert Bill was prepared by the law member of the viceroy’s council, Sir CP Ilbert.
  •  Local self-government acts were passed in various provinces during 1883-85.
  •  Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya said: “Ripon was the greatest and the most beloved viceroy India has known.”

Lord Dufferin (1884-88)

  •  Formation of the Indian National Congress on 28 Oct 1885 in Bombay.

Lord Lansdowne (1888-94)

  •  The Indian Council Act 1892 passed
  •  The Age of Consent Bill passed
  •  Organisation of the Mohammedan Anglo-Oriental Defence Association of Upper India (1893)
  •  Demarcation of the Afghan boundary (Durand line)
  •  Tilak celebrates the Ganapati festival (1893).

Lord Elgin II (1894-99)

  •  The convention delimiting the frontier between China and India was ratified.
  •  Lyall commission appointed after famine
  •  Assassination of two British officials by the Chapekar brothers in 1897.

Lord Curzon (1899-1905)

  •  A famine commission was appointed under the presidency of Sir Anthony MacDonnell.
  •  The Indian coinage and paper currency act of 1899
  •  He passed the Ancient Monuments Act, 1904 and also founded the Archaeological Department.
  •  Partition of Bengal on 16th October, 1905 (It was cardinal blunder of Curzon.)
  •  Shyamji Krishna Verma founded India House in London (1905).

Lord Minto II (1905-10)

  •  Muslim League was formed in1906 at Dacca.
  •  Minto-Morley Reforms (Indian Council Act of 1909).
  •  Execution of Khudiram Bose on 30th April, 1908.
  •  Tilak sentenced to six years’ transportation on the charge of sedition
  •  Surat Session and split in the congress (1907).

Lord Hardinge II (1910-16)

  •  Partition of Bengal was reversed in 1911.
  •  A grand Durbar was held at Delhi in honour of King   George V and Queen Mary.
  •  It was declared to transport the capital of British India from Calcutta to Delhi in 1911.
  •  Capital of India shifted from Calcutta to Delhi in 1912.
  •  Bomb thrown at Lord Hardinge on his state entry into Delhi.
  •  Ghadar Party formed by Lala Hardayal at San Francisco in 1913 began the Ghadar movement.
  •  Establishment of Hindu Mahasabha by Madan Mohan Malviya in 1915

Lord Chelmsford (1916-21)

  •  Formation of two Home Rule Leagues — one by Bal Gangadhar Tilak at Pune and the other by Mrs Annie Besant at Madras.
  •  Arrival of Gandhi and Champaran Satyagraha in 1916
  •  Saddler commision of education in 1917
  •  Kheda Satyagraha and Satyagraha at Ahmedabad in 1918
  •  The Goverment of India Act of 1919 (Montagu– Chelmsford reforms), which introduced dyarchy in the provinces.
  •  Under the Montagu–Chelmsford reforms of 1919, the Auditor General became independent of the Government.
  •  The Jallianwala Bagh Massacre on 13 April, 1919
  •  Khilafat movement (1919-20)
  •  Non-cooperation movement (1920-22)
  •  Rowlatt Act, 1919
  •  Moplah Rebellion on the Malabar Coast

Lord Reading (1921-26)

  •  Violent incidents at Chauri Chaura led Gandhiji to call off the Non-Cooperation Movement 1922.
  •  Kakori robbery in 1925
  •  CPI founded in 1921
  •  RSS founded in1925

Lord Irwin (1926-31)

  •  Appointment of Simon Commission in 1927
  •  The Simon Commission came to India in 1928
  •  In 1928, Nehru report recommended principles for the new constitution of India.
  •  In Lahore session of 1929, Congress adopted the goal of Complete Independence for India.
  •  Civil disobedience movement started in 1930.
  •  Gandhiji began Dandi March to manufacture illegal salt (March 12th, 1930).
  •  Gandhi-Irwin pact of 1931
  •  Jawaharlal Nehru hoisted the tricolour of Indian Independence on the bank of the river Ravi at Lahore on 1st January, 1930.
  •  All India Youth Congress, 1928
  •  Butler Commission in 1927
  •  First round table conference, 1930

Lord Willingdon (1931-36)

  •  Second Round Table conference in 1931
  •  Ramsay MacDonald announced the Communal Award (modified by the Poona Pact) in 1932.
  •  Third Round Table Conference in 1932
  •  The Government of India Act, 1935 passed
  •  Civil Disobedience movement in 1933.
  •  Foundation of Congress Socialist Party in 1934
  •  Burma separated from India in 1935
  •  All India Kisan Sabha, 1936

Lord Linlithgow (1936-43)

  •  First General Election (1936-37)
  •  Forward Bloc founded in 1939 by Subhash Chandra Bose
  •  Deliverance Day by Muslim League (1939)
  •  August Offer, 1940
  •  Cripps Mission, 1942
  •  Quit India Movement, 1942

Lord Wavell (1943-47)

  •  C. Rajagopalachari’s formula (or CR formula or Rajaji formula), 1944.
  •  End of the Second World War, 1945
  •  Cabinet Mission, 1946, and acceptance of its proposals by the Congress
  •  Direct Action Day by the Muslim League on 16th August, 1946
  •  British Prime Minister Clement Attlee’s annoucement of 20th February 1947 that power would be transferred to the Indians by June 1948

Lord Mountbatten (1947-48)

  •  Last British viceroy of India
  •  First Governor-General of India after Independence
  •  Announced the June 3, 1947 plan.
  •  Indian Independence Act of 1947
  •  Partition of India and Pakistan came into being on 14th August, 1947.
  •  Appointment of two boundary commissions under Sir Cryil Radcliffe.

C. Rajgopalachari (1948-50)

  •  The last Governor-General of free India.
  •  The only Indian Governor-General, he remained in office from 21st June, 1948 to 25th January, 1950.
  •  He prepared a formula for Congress–League cooperation. Gandhiji supported this formula.