Viceroys of India from 1858 to 1947

Viceroys1.Lord Canning (1856 – 1862)

  • First Viceroy of India.
  • Revolt of 1857.
  • Queen Victoria’s Proclamation & passing of the Indian Act of 1858.
  • Withdrawal of the ‘Doctrine of Lapse’ in 1859
  • Foundation of the Universities of Calcutta, Bombay and Madras in 1857.
  • Indian Councils Act was passed in 1861.
  • Indigo Revolt in Bengal in 1859-60.
  • White Mutiny by the European troops of East India Company in 1859.
  • Penal Code of 1860 declared slave trade in India illegal.
  • Indian Councils Act of 1861.
  • Bahadur Shah II was sent to Rangoon (Burma).

2.Lord Elgin (1862)

  • Supressed the Wahabi Movement.
  • Suddenly died in 1862.

3.Sir John Lawrence (1864 – 69)

  • Famine commission was constituted.
  • Followed a policy of rigid non-interference in Afghanistan called Policy of Masterly Inactivity.
  • Set up High Courts at Calcutta, Bombay & Madras in 1865.
  • Created the Indian Forest department.
  • War with Bhutan in 1865.
  • Telegraphic Communication opened with Europe in 1869-70.

4.Lord Mayo (1869 – 1872)

  • Started the process of financial decentralization in India in 1870.
  • Established the Rayol college at Kathiarwar & Mayo College at Ajmer for the Indian princes.
  • First time in Indian history, a census was held in 1871.
  • Organised the Statistical Survey of India.
  • Beginning of system of state Railway.
  • Only Viceroy to be murdered in office by a Pathan convict in the Andamans in 1872..

5.Lord Northbrook (1872 – 1876)

  • Visit of Prince of Wales Edward VII.
  • Trial of Gaekawad of Baroda in 1875.
  • Kuka Movement in Punjab in 1872.
  • Bihar famine in 1874.

6.Lord Lytton (1876 – 1880)

  • Organised the Grand ‘Delhi Durbar’ in 1877 to adorn Queen Victoria with the title of ‘Kaiser I Hind’.
  • Arms act of 1878 made it mandatory for Indians to acquire license for arms.
  • Passed the notorious Vernacular Press act (1878).
  • Lowering of maximum age from 21 years to 19 years for the Civil Services Examination, an attempt to prevent Indians from entering Civil Services.
  • Appointment of first Famine Commission under Sir Richard Strachy.
  • Second Anglo Afghan war in 1878.

7.Lord Ripon (1880 – 1884)

  • Repeated the Vernacular Press act in 1882.
  • local self government act in 1882.
  • First Factory Act in 1881 for welfare of child labour.
  • Appointment of an Education Commission under Sir William Hunter in 1882.
  • Iibert bill controversy in 1883.
  • Holding of first decennial and regular census in 1881 which put the total population at 2.54 crores.
  • Famine code of 1883.

8.Lord Dufferin (1884 – 1888)

  • Foundation of the Indian National Congress (INC) in 1885
  • Commented on the Congress as “microsopic minority.
  • Third Burmese War ended & finally annexed Burma (1885-86).

9.Lord Lansdowne (1888 – 1894)

  • Passed the Age of Consent Act in 1891 which forbade marriage of girl below 12.
  • Second factory Act of 1891.
  • Division of the Civil services into Imperial, Provincial and the Subordinate.
  • Indian Councils Act of 1892 passed.
  • Appointment of Durand Commission to define the line between British India and Afghanistan (Durand Line).

10.Lord Elgin II (1894 – 1899)

  • Great famine of 1896 – 1897 in Rajasthan & Lyall Commission was appointed.
  • Chapekar brothers of Una assassinated two British officers in 1897.

11.Lord Curzon (1899 – 1905)

  • Creation of new province called the North West Frontier Province.
  • Appointment of Sir Thomas Raleigh Commission in 1902 & Indian Universities Act of 1904
  • as the basis of its recommendations.
  • Ancient Monuments Preservation Act of 1904.
  • Passing of Calcutta Corporation Act in 1899.
  • Partition of Bengal in 1905.
  • Beginning of Swadeshi Movement, against the partition of Bengal.
  • Appointment of Police Commission under Sir Andrew Frazer.
  • Colonel Young Husband’s expedition to Tibet in 1904.
  • Set up Irrigation Commission of 1901 & Jhelum canal was completed.
  • Pusa Agricultural Institute was established in 1903.
  • Appointed Moncrief Commission on irrigation in 1902.
  • Official Secrets Act was passed in 1904.
  • Passed Indian Coinage and Paper Currency Act & put India on gold standard.
  • Responsible for setting up Railway Board.
  • Resigned from his office, because of his controversy with Kitchner in 1905.

12.Lord Minto (1905 – 1910)

  • Great political unrest in India.
  • Extremists like Lala Laipat Rai & Ajit Singh (in May, 1907) and Bal Gangadhar Tilak (in July, 1908) were sent to Mandalay jail in Burma.
  • Split in the Congress in Surat session 1907.
  • Foundation of Muslim League by Aga Khan 1906.
  • Partition of Bengal came into force in October 1905.
  • Khudiram Bose was hanged on April 30, 1908.
  • Newspapers Act, 1908.
  • Minto-Morley Reforms (the Indian Council Act) of 1909.
  • Formal adoption of divide & rule policy in 1909.

13.Lord Hardinge (1910 – 1916)

  • Partition of Bengal was cancelled in 1911.
  • Bihar and Orissa was created in 1911.
  • Coronation Durbar of King George V & Queen Mary at Delhi in 1911.
  • Transfer of Capital from Culcutta to Delhi in 1912.
  • Ghadar Movement started in 1915 in San Francisco.
  • Hindu Maha Sabha in 1915 by Madan Mohan Malviya.
  • Defence of India Act, 1915.
  • Gandhiji came back to India from South Africa in 1915.

14.Lord Chelmsford (1916 – 1921)

  • Foundation of two Home Rule Leagues – one by Tilak in Apr 1916 & another by Annie Beasant in Sep 1916.
  • Lucknow Session & the reunion of the Congress in 1916.
  • Setting up of Sabarmati Ashram in 1916, Champaran Satyagrah in 1917, Satyagraha at Ahmedabad in 1918 & Kheda Satyagraha (1918) by Ghandhiji.
  • August Declaration in 1917 by Montague, the Secretary of State.
  • Resignation of some veteran leaders led by S.N. Banerjee from Congress & founded Indian Liberal Federation (1918).
  • Government of India Act of 1919.
  • Rowlatt Act in 1919 & Jalhianwala Bagh Massacre in 13 April 1919.
  • Khilafat Movement in 1919-20 & Non-cooperation movement in 1920-22.
  • Foundation of women university of Poona & Benaras Hindu University at Benaras in 1916.
  • Aligarh Muslim University was founded.
  • Moplah uprising in 1921.
  • Prince of Wales visited India.

15.Lord Reading (1921 – 1926)

  • Chauri Chaura incident in 1922 & withdrawal of Non-cooperation movement by Gandhi.
  • Foundation of Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh (RSS) by Hedgevar at Nagpur in 1925.
  • Foundation of Swaraj Party by C.R. Das & Motilal Nehru in 1922.
  • Repeal of Press Act of 1910 & Rowlatt Act of 1919.
  • Foundation of Communist Party of India, 1925.
  • Inter University Board was passed.
  • Holding of simultaneous examination for the ICS in England and India with effect from 1923.
  • Royal Commission on agriculture was established.
  • Railway Budget seperated from general budget in 1925.
  • Young Hilton Committee on currency (1926).
  • Beginning of Indian mission of officer cadre of Indian army.
  • Vishwabharati University started by Rabindra Nath Tagore in 1922.
  • Communist part was founded in 1921 by M.N. Roy.
  • Kakory Train Robbery on August 9, 1925.
  • Hilton Young Committee on currency was appointed in 1926.

16.Lord Irwin (1926 – 1931)

  • Simon Commission visited India in 1928.
  • Congress passed the Indian Resolution in 1929.
  • Dandi March (March 12, 1930).
  • Civil Disobedience Movement in 1930.
  • First Round Table Conference held in England in 1930.
  • Murder of superintendent of police, Saunders.
  • Jawaharlal Nehru hoisted tricolour of Indian Independence.
  • Gandhi Irwin Pact (March 5, 1931) was signed & Civil Disobediance Movement was withdrawn.

17.Lord Willington (1931 – 1936)

  • Second Round Table conference in London in 1931.
  • On his return Gandhiji was again arrested & Civil Disobedience Movement was resumed in January, 1932.
  • Lee Moody Pact (October 1933) by Bombay textile group.
  • Third Round Table conference in 1932.
  • Poona Pact was signed.
  • Government of India act in 1935 was passed.
  • Burma was separated from British Empire in 1935
18.Lord Linlithgow (1936 – 1943)
  • Congress Ministries in majority of the provinces in 1937.
  • Resignation of Subhash Chandra Bose from the presidentship of the Congress as well as from its membership in 1939, formation of Forward Bloc by Bose and his followers (1939).
  • At its Haripura Session (1939) the Congress declared Poorna Swaraj ideal to cover native states & British India.
  • Muslim League at its Lahore Session (1940) passed Pakistan Resolution.
  • Outbreak of World War II in 1939.
  • Cripps Mission in 1942.
  • In 1940 individual Civil Disobedience Movement was started.
  • August Offer by Linlithgow (1940), its rejection by the Congress & the starting of individual satyagraha by Gandhi.
  • Cripps Mission came to India 1942 offering Dominion status & its rejection by Congress.
  • Starting of Quit India movement also called August Revolution, by Congress (8 Aug 1942) in the Bombay session.

19.Lord Wavell (1943 – 47)

  • Wavell Plan & Simla Conference 1945.
  • INA Trials & Royal Indian Mutiny in 1946.
  • Britain P.M Clement Atlee announced to give independence to India by June 1948.
  • C.R. Formula evolved by C. Rajagopalachari in 1949 & Gandhi Jinnah talks based on it, failure.
  • Cabinet Mission (3 members: Lawrence, Cripps and Alexander) & acceptence of the plan by both Congress & Muslim League.
  • General Election held in 1945-46.
  • Temporary Government formed on Sep 2nd, 1946.
  • Launch of “Direct Action Day” by the League on 16th Aug1946.

20.Lord Mountbatten (1947 – 48)

  • Last Viceroy of British India & the first Governor General of free India.
  • On 3 June 1947 plan to partition was announced.
  • On August 15, 1947 India was declared independent, but on the communal principle of divide.
  • His plan to make India free on August 15 1947 is also known as June 3rd Plan.

Rajagopalachari (1948-50) First & Last Indian Governor General.

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