Tuesday, June 26, 2012

LORD CURZON (1899- 1905)

LORD CURZON (1899- 1905)

LORD CURZON (1899- 1905)

Curzon did the following reforms in India

1)      Administrative Reforms

2)      Economic Reforms

3)      Foreign Policy

4)      Partition of Bengal


a)      Calcutta municipal corporation act 1899 : Rippon gave gift of local self-government to Indians but this gift became curse by the act of 1892 in this situation when government has assumed that the members of local self-bodies will be tilted towards government but the members of local bodies being Indians were tilted towards nationalist and this paved the path for legislature which became curse for government therefore to overcome this threat Curzon passed municipal corporation act by which he increased nominated members in local bodies which lead to increase in the presence of government at local bodies.

Declared agenda: To improve the efficiency of local bodies

Hidden agenda: To control the entry of nationalist into legislature


b)      Police reform: Curzon appointed a commission under Sir Andrew Frazer called Frazer commission. The objective of this commission is to review the situation of provincial police in India. This commission gave the report that police department is undisciplined and inefficient. Therefore Curzon took the steps to reform police department for this purpose he established police training schools in India and intelligence department called C.I.D to strengthen intelligence wing of police department

Declared agenda: To give law and order to people

Hidden agenda: To control nationalist in India


c)       University reforms: For this purpose Curzon appointed a commission under Sir Thomas Raleigh. The objective of this commission is to review the situation of higher education in India. The report by this commission led to enactment of university act 1904. Provisions of university act 1904 are:-

  • Increase in officials members in senate of university

  • Strict affiliation rules

  • Periodical inspection

  • Provision of veto

Declared agenda: To standardized higher education in India

Hidden agenda: To control the youth from politics


The basic principle of Indian foreign policy is live and let live. All our neighbors are path of prosperity therefore till ancient times till now India has followed the policy of live and let live e.g. Dhama mission by Asoka, non-alignment movement by J.L. Nehru, cultural expansion by Man Mohan Singh but with the beginning of British rule in India i.e. from 1757 for their personal interest and protect India from foreign invasion Britishers reverse this policy and adopted the policy of war and aggression e.g. war towards Burma and Afghanistan.

When Curzon arrived in India the expansionist world powers like France, Germany etc. they became threat for India and in this situation Curzon revived the policy of aggression and the two victims were Persia and Tibet.

a)      Persia: Persia was the old name of Iran.  French were interfering in affairs of Persia and in spite of repeated warning by Curzon the shah of Persia was not relenting in this situation curzon send a military expedition under Sir major Douglas and himself visited Persia and after which Persia aligned with British cause in central Asia

b)      Tibet: Tibet is called the roof of the world and oxygen level is minimum in the area so people of Tibet have to compulsory perform Bardo,the yogic practice and this is the reason the people of Tibet are naturally spiritual. Russians were interfering in the matters of Tibet and lama of Tibet refuse to remove Russians from Tibet and this led to second military expedition under young husband and Tibetan brought in line.

Declared and hidden agenda: On the case of Persia and Tibet, nationalist accused Curzon for wasting men and money of India for the interest of Britain but he declared that as India has a long history of foreign invasion so this step was to protect the nation but the hidden agenda was to control the world expansionist power so that they could never reach to India.


a) Land Resolution Act 1900

b) Punjab Land alienation act1902

c) Establishment of cooperative banks

d) Promotion to irrigation


a)      Land Resolution Act 1900: State is the first enemy of the farmers as he takes land revenue from farmers and in the British period the biggest curse was sunset law. under sunset law if a farmer failed to deposit the land revenue in the evening of due date, his property was confiscated. Curzon through land resolution of 1900 ended the sunset law and also declared for liberal attitude in collection of land revenue.

b)      Punjab Land alienation act1902: Under this act Curzon declared the land of agriculture will not be transferred to non-agriculturist. In this way he protected the farmers from money lander class.

c)       Establishment of cooperative banks: As agriculture is the not regular source of income so the farmers are generally in financial crisis. Curzon was aware about it so he established cooperative banks to provide financial assistance to farmers at easier interest rates.

d)       Promotion to irrigation: Curzon established Moncrieff commission to review the situation of agriculture in India. After recommendation of the commission he constructed new canals while repairing old one. Example Bari doab canal of Punjab.


Declared agenda: The declared agenda of Curzon was to uplift farmers and agriculture in India.

Hidden agenda: As mass support is the spine of democracy and 90% of population at that time were agriculturist so by giving unconditional support to farmers he wanted to cut off the majority from nationalist and he was successful in it, which is evident as farmers did not participated in Swadeshi movement .


Bengal was such a big province and government was facing problem in handling this province therefore Curzon took a step to divide Bengal but he divided Bengal on the communal basis that is Hindu dominated area on one side while Muslim on others. Although nationalist were not opposing the partition, they were opposing the way of partition and they wanted Bengali's speaking people on one side and non-Bengali's speaking people on other but Curzon didn't pay any importance to the demand of nationalist and he hurt Bengali sentiment which gave birth to new incident In the history of freedom struggle that famous incident was Swadeshi Movement under the leadership of new group of congress that is extremist

Next article will be on Second phase of congress . You can also read the First Phase of Congress.


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