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An 1895 group photograph of the eleven year old Krishnaraja Wadiyar IV, ruler of the princely state of Mysore in South India, with his brothers and sisters. In 1799, his grandfather, then aged five, had been granted dominion of Mysore by the British and forced into a subsidiary alliance. The British later directly governed the state between 1831 and 1881.
Colonial India
Portuguese India 1510–1961
Dutch India 1605–1825
Danish India 1696–1869
French India 1759–1954
British India 1612–1947
East India Company 1612–1757
Company rule in India 1757–1857
British Raj 1858–1947
British rule in Burma 1826–1947
Princely states 1765–1947
Partition of India 1947
For other uses, see Principality, Other princely states.

A Princely State (also called Native State or Indian State) was a nominally sovereign[1] entity of British rule in India that was not directly administered by the British, but rather by an Indian ruler under a form of indirect rule[2] such as suzerainty or paramountcy. There were as many as 568 states in India before independence.[citation needed]

Contents

The British Raj and the Native States

The Govindgarh Palace of the Maharaja of Rewa. The palace which was built as a hunting lodge later became famous for the first white tigers that were found in the adjacent jungle and raised in the palace zoo.

India under the British Raj or the British Indian Empire consisted of two divisions: British India and the Native States or Princely states. In its Interpretation Act of 1889, the British Parliament adopted the following definitions:[3]

The expression British India shall mean all territories and places within Her Majesty's dominions which are for the time being governed by Her Majesty through the Governor-General of India, or through any Governor or other officer subordinate to the Governor-General of India. The expression India shall mean British India together with any territories of a Native Prince or Chief under the suzerainty of Her Majesty, exercised through the Governor-General of India, or through any Governor or other officer subordinate to the Governor-General of India. (52 & 53 Vict. cap. 63, sec. 18)

(In general the term "British India" had been used (and is still used) to also refer to the regions under the rule of the British East India Company in India from 1600 to 1858.[4] The term has also been used to refer to the "British in India."[5])

Suzerainty over 175 Princely States, some of the largest and most important, was exercised (in the name of the British Crown) by central government of British India under the Viceroy; the remaining, approximately 500, states were dependents of the provincial governments of British India under a Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, or Chief Commissioner (as the case might have been).[6] A clear distinction between "dominion" and "suzerainty" was supplied by the jurisdiction of the courts of law: the law of British India rested upon the laws passed by the British Parliament and the legislative powers those laws vested in the various governments of British India, both central and local; in contrast, the courts of the Princely States existed under the authority of the respective rulers of those states.[6]

Princely status and titles

The Nawab of Junagadh Bhadur Khan III (seated center in an ornate chair) shown in a 1885 photograph with state officials and family.

The Indian rulers bore various titles—including Maharaja ("great king"), Badshah ("emperor"), Raja ("king"), Nawab ("governor"), Nizam, Wāli, and many others. Whatever the literal meaning and traditional prestige of the ruler's actual title, the British government translated them all as "prince," in order to avoid the implication that the native rulers could be "kings" with status equal to that of the British monarch.

Some Hindu rulers used the title Thakur or its variant Thakore.

More prestigious Hindu rulers (mostly existing before the Mughal Empire, or having split from such old states) often used the title "Raja," or a variant such as "Rana," "Rao," "Rawat" or "Rawal." Also in this 'class' were several Thakur sahibs and a few particular titles, such as Sar Desai.

The most prestigious Hindu rulers usually had the prefix "maha" ("great", compare for example Grand duke) in their titles, as in Maharaja, Maharana, Maharao, etc. The states of Travancore and Cochin had queens regnant styled Maharani, generally the female forms applied only to sisters, spouses and widows, who could however act as regents.

There were also compound titles, such as (Maha)rajadhiraj, Raj-i-rajgan, often relics from an elaborate system of hierarchical titles under the Mughal emperors. For example, the addition of the adjective Bahadur raised the status of the titleholder one level.

Furthermore most dynasties used a variety of additional titles, such as Varma in South India. This should not be confused with various titles and suffixes not specific to princes but used by entire (sub)castes.

The Sikh princes concentrated at Punjab, usually adopted Hindu type titles when attaining princely rank; at a lower level Sardar was used.

Muslim rulers almost all used the title "Nawab" (the Arabic honorific of naib, "deputy," used of the Mughal governors, who became de facto autonomous with the decline of the Mughal Empire), with the prominent exceptions of the Nizam of Hyderabad & Berar, the Wāli/Khan of Kalat and the Wāli of Swat. Other less usual titles included Darbar Sahib, Dewan, Jam, Mehtar (unique to Chitral) and Mir (from Emir).

Precedence and prestige

Photograph (1900) of the Maharani of Sikkim. Sikkim was under the suzerainty of the Provincial government of Bengal; its ruler received a 15-gun salute.

However, the actual importance of a princely state cannot be read from the title of its ruler, which was usually granted (or at least recognised) as a favour, often in recognition for loyalty and services rendered historically by the Mughal emperor, and later by the British rulers succeeding it as paramount power (first the HEIC, de facto; later the British crown, and ultimately assuming the style Emperor of India as successor to the emperor of the abolished Mughal realm). Although some titles were raised once or even repeatedly, there was no automatic updating when a state gained or lost real power. In fact, princely titles were even awarded to holders of domains (mainly jagirs) and even zamindars (tax collectors), which were not states at all. Various sources give significantly different numbers of states and domains of the various types. Even in general, the definition of titles and domains are clearly not well-established. There is also no strict relation between the levels of the titles and the classes of gun salutes, the real measure of precedence, but merely a growing percentage of higher titles in classes with more guns.

The gun salute system was used to set unambiguously the precedence of the major rulers in the area in which the British East India Company was active, or generally of the states and their dynasties. Princely rulers were entitled to be saluted by the firing of an odd number of guns between three and 21, with a greater number of guns indicating greater prestige. (There were many minor rulers who were not entitled to any gun salutes, and as a rule the majority of gun-salute princes had at least nine, with numbers below that usually the prerogative of Arab coastal Sheikhs also under British protection.) Generally, the number of guns remained the same for all successive rulers of a particular state, but individual princes were sometimes granted additional guns on a personal basis. Furthermore, rulers were sometimes granted additional gun salutes within their own territories only, constituting a semi-promotion.

While the states of all these rulers (about 120) were known as salute states, there were far more so-called non-salute states of lower prestige, and even more princes (in the broadest sense of the term) not even acknowledged as such. On the other hand, the dynasties of certain defunct states were allowed to keep their princely status—they were known as Political Pensioners. Though none of these princes were awarded gun salutes, princely titles in this category were recognised as among certain vassals of salute states, and were not even in direct relation with the paramount power.

After independence, the (Hindu) Maharana of Udaipur displaced the Nizam of Hyderabad as the most senior prince in India, and the style Highness was extended to all rulers entitled to 9-gun salutes. When these dynasties had been integrated into the Indian Union they were promised continued privileges and an income, known as the Privy Purse, for their upkeep. Subsequently, when the Indian government abolished the Privy Purse in 1971, the whole princely order ceased to exist under Indian law, although many families continue to retain their social prestige informally; some descendants are still prominent in regional or national politics, diplomacy, business and high society.

At the time of Indian independence, only five rulers—the Nizam of Hyderabad, the Maharaja of Mysore, the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir state, the Maharaja Gaekwad of Baroda and the Maharaja Scindia of Gwalior—were entitled to a 21-gun salute. Five more rulers—the Nawab of Bhopal, the Maharaja Holkar of Indore, the Maharana of Udaipur, the Maharaja of Kolhapur and the Maharaja of Travancore—were entitled to 19-gun salutes. The most senior princely ruler was the (Muslim) Nizam of Hyderabad, who was entitled to the unique style Exalted Highness. Other princely rulers entitled to salutes of 11 guns (soon 9 guns too) or more were entitled to the style Highness. No special style was used by rulers entitled to lesser gun salutes.

As paramount ruler, and successor to the Mughals, the British King-Emperor of India, for whom the style of Majesty was reserved, was entitled to an 'imperial' 101-gun salute—in the European tradition also the number of guns fired to announce the birth of a (male) heir to the throne.

All princely rulers were eligible to be appointed to certain British orders of chivalry associated with India, The Most Exalted Order of the Star of India and The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire. Even women could be appointed as "Knights" (instead of Dames) of these orders. Rulers entitled to 21-gun and 19-gun salutes were normally appointed to the highest rank possible (Knight Grand Commander of the Order of the Star of India).

Many Indian princes served in the British army (as others in local guard or police forces), often rising to the high official ranks; some even served while on the throne. Many of these were appointed as ADC etc., either to the ruling prince of their own house (in the case of relatives of such rulers) or indeed to the British King-Emperor. Many also saw action, both on the subcontinent and on other fronts, during both World Wars.

It was also not unusual for members of princely houses to be appointed to various colonial offices, often far from their native state, or to enter the diplomatic corps.

The doctrine of lapse

A controversial aspect of Company rule was the doctrine of lapse, a policy under which lands whose feudal ruler had died (or otherwise become unfit to rule) without an heir would become directly controlled by the company. This policy went counter to Indian tradition where unlike Europe it was far more the accepted norm for a ruler to appoint his own heir.

The doctrine of lapse was pursued most vigorously by the Governor-General Sir James Ramsay, 10th Earl (later 1st Marquess) of Dalhousie. Dalhousie annexed seven states, including the Maratha states of Nagpur, Jhansi, Satara and Awadh (Oudh), whose Nawabs he had accused of misrule. Resentment over the annexation of these states turned to indignation when the heirlooms of the Maharajas of Nagpur were auctioned off in Calcutta. Dalhousie's actions contributed to the rising discontent amongst the upper castes which played a large part in the outbreak of the Indian rebellion of 1857. The last Mughal Badshah (emperor), whom many of the mutineers saw as a figurehead to rally around, was deposed following its suppression.

In response to the unpopularity of the doctrine, it was discontinued with the end of company rule and the formation of the Indian Empire, and no further states were absorbed in such a way.

Colonial governance

Photograph (1894) of the 19-year old Maharajah of Kohlapur visiting the British resident and his staff at the Residency.

By the beginning of the 20th century, the four largest states—Hyderabad State, Mysore, Jammu and Kashmir, and Baroda—were directly under the authority of the Governor-General of India, in the person of a British Resident. Two agencies, Rajputana Agency and Central India Agency, oversaw 20 and 148 princely states, respectively. The remaining princely states had political officers, or Agents, who answered to the administrators of India's provinces. Five princely states were then under the authority of Madras, 354 under Bombay, 26 of Bengal, 2 under Assam, 34 under Punjab, 15 under Central Provinces and Berar and 2 under United Provinces.

By the early 1930s, the British took over the state whose king had died (Doctrine of Lapse). Most of the princely states under the authority of India's provinces were organised into new agencies, answerable to the Governor-general, on the model of the Central India - and Rajputana agencies: the Eastern States Agency, Punjab States Agency, Baluchistan Agency, Deccan States Agency, Madras States Agency and the Northwest Frontier States Agency. The Baroda residency was combined with the princely states of northern Bombay Presidency into the Baroda, Western States and Gujarat Agency. Gwalior was separated from the Central India Agency and placed under its own Resident, and the states of Rampur and Benares, formerly under the authority of the United Provinces, were placed under the Gwalior Residency in 1936. The princely states of Sandur and Banganapalle in Mysore Presidency were transferred to the authority of the Mysore Resident in 1939.

A short list of Native States in 1909

The native states in 1909 included five large states that were in "direct political relations" with the Government of India. Of these, Nepal, differed from others, in that it was independent in its internal administration, but was represented internationally by the Government of India.[7] For the complete list of princely states in 1947, see List of Indian Princely States.

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Under suzerainty of the Central Government

Five large Princely States in direct political relations with the Central Government in India[7]
Name of Princely State Area in Square Miles Population in 1901 Approximate Revenue of the State (in hundred thousand Rupees) Title, ethnicity, and religion of ruler Gun-Salute for Ruler Designation of local political officer
Hyderabad 82,698 approx. 11.14 million (Hindus and Muslims) 359 Nizam, Turk, Sunni Muslim 21 Resident in Hyderabad
Mysore 29,444 5.53 million (mostly Hindu) 190 Maharaja, Rajput, Hindu 21 Resident in Mysore
Baroda 8,099 1.95 million (chiefly Hindu) 123 Maharaja, Maratha, Hindu 21 Resident at Baroda
Kashmir and Jammu 80,900 2.91 million including Gilgit, Baltistan (Skardu), Ladakh, Chitral and Punch (Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists) 87 Maharaja, Dogra Rajput, Hindu 19 (21 within Kashmir) Resident in Kashmir
Total 445,891 25.54 million 909
Central India Agency, Rajputana Agency and the Baluchistan Agency

Under a Provincial Government

Burma (52 States)
52 States in Burma: all except the Karen States were included in British India[11]
Name of Princely State Area in Square Miles Population in 1901 Approximate Revenue of the State (in hundred thousand Rupees) Title, ethnicity, and religion of ruler Gun-Salute for Ruler Designation of local political officer
Hsipaw (Thibaw) 5,086 105,000 (Buddhist) 3 Sawbwa, Shan, Buddhist 9 Superintendent, Northern Shan States
Kengtung 12,000 190,000 (Buddhist) 1 Sawbwa, Shan, Buddhist 9 Superintendent Southern Shan States
Mongnai 2,717 44,000 (Buddhist) 0.5 Sawbwa, Shan, Buddhist 9 Superintendent Southern Shan States
5 Karen States 4,830 45,795 (Buddhist and Animists) 0.5 Superintendent Southern Shan States
44 Other States 42,198 792,152 (Buddhist and Animist) 8.5
Total 67,011 1,177,987 13.5
Other states under provincial governments

Accession

After independence in 1947, the princely states were forced to accede—and thus sign away their political autonomy—either to the secular, mainly Hindu dominion of India or the majority Islamic dominion of Pakistan (consisting of West Pakistan and East Pakistan; the latter would later break away as Bangladesh). The accession was to be chosen by its ruling Prince, not by the population, akin to the 16th century European principle of cuius regio eius religio—though, in practice, there were exceptions to this rule. Most acceded peacefully, except for four: Junagadh, Hyderabad, Jammu and Kashmir and Tripura.

Junagadh, the largest state in the Kathiawar peninsula (now in Gujarat), was a princely state with a Muslim ruler over a Hindu majority. It had originally announced to join Pakistan by its Nawab Muhammad Mahabat Khanji III. He was traveling in Pakistan's capital Karachi to sign the treaty of accession when the Indian Army, with the support of Junagadh's Hindu majority, took over control of the state. The Nawab fled into exile and the Indian-appointed Prime Minister of the state announced its merger with India.

In Hyderabad, a similar fate befell a Muslim dynasty which had been the highest in rank since the abolition of the Mughals at Delhi and the Kingdom of Oudh. The Muslim ruler of Hyderbad Osman Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VII, the last Nizam, and his followers, Razakars, wished to remain independent. The Indian Government carried out the so called “Hyderabad Police Action” against the Nizam. Code-named “Operation Polo” by the Indian military, this action by the Indian armed forces' ended the rule of the Nizams of Hyderabad and led to the incorporation of the princely state of Hyderabad into the Indian Union.

Jammu and Kashmir had a Muslim majority but was ruled by a Hindu Raja. The Muslim League-dominated legislative assembly issued one statement that represented the will of the Muslim people: “After carefully considering the position, the conference has arrived at the conclusion that accession of the State to Pakistan is absolutely necessary in view of the geographic, economic, linguistic, cultural and religious conditions… It is therefore necessary that the State should accede to Pakistan."

The Maharaja Hari Singh, reluctant, would have preferred to remain independent, but was advised by his later Prime Minister, Mehr Chand Mahajan, that a landlocked country such as Kashmir would be soon engulfed by foreign powers such as the USSR or China[18].

However, M.A. Jinnah, creator and Governor-General of Pakistan, included Kashmir in his concept of Pakistan. The British-controlled Gilgit Scouts staged a rebellion in the Northern Areas, as a result of which this region became effectively a part of Pakistan, unilaterally without a referendum and is up to the present being administered by Pakistan as a part of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK)

The Tribal Kabailis of the North West Frontier Province attacked and ravaged Kashmir proper, with the help of the Pakistan armed forces which were still controlled and administered by British officers.

With an independence no longer an option, the Maharaja now turned to India, requesting troops for safeguarding Kashmir. Though Indian Prime Minister Nehru was ready to send the troops, the acting Governor General of India, Lord Mountbatten of Burma advised the Maharaja to accede to India before she can send her troops. Hence, considering the emergency situation he signed the instrument of accession to the Union of India. However, evidence proved that long before the Maharaja could meet the Indian Prime Minister, Nehru, and sign the instrument of accession,India had sent forces into Kashmir. After not being able to push back the Pakistani tribals and people of Gilgit, Nehru under Mountbatten's advise took the matter to the UN, insisting that Jammu and Kashmir's accession to India was legal,the UN did not agree and Nehru promised the people of Kashmir the choice to join either India or Pakistan after a plebiscite and also mentioned, "If the people don't want to be part of the Indian union, then even though it might hurt us, we will accept their choice."

United Nations Security Council Resolution 47 was adopted on 21 April 1948, stating that "(...) After hearing arguments from both India and Pakistan, the Council increased the size of the Commission established by United Nations Security Council Resolution 39 to five members, instructed the Commission to go to the subcontinent and help the governments of India and Pakistan restore peace and order to the region and prepare for a plebiscite to decide the fate of Kashmir".

The resolution further recommended that in order to ensure the impartiality of the plebiscite, Pakistan withdraw all tribesmen and nationals who entered the region for the purpose of fighting, and that India to also remove all her troops. The Commission was also to send as many observers into the region as it deemed necessary to ensure the provisions of the resolution were enacted" United Nations Security Council Resolution 47.

In practice, the resolution failed to resolve the problem, which remains unresolved up to the present. At the time and up to the present, Pakistanis and Kashmiri separatists accused India of having acted with a double standard - i.e., acting according to the wish of a majority Hindu population where the ruler was Muslim (as in the case of Junagadh) and according to the wishes of the Hindu ruler where the majority population was Muslim. (As Kashmir was no longer a Princely state, further developments fall outside the scope of the present page, and can be found in Kashmir#Post-1948 developments).

Tripura remained an independent kingdom after the Partition of India, until it joined India 2 years later under the Tripura Merger Agreement.

Post-independence

India

On accession by a princely state, its territories and administrations merged into the Union of India. The rulers of the princely states were allowed to retain their hereditary titles and official residences. Depending upon their size, importance and revenue they were also allowed to retain additional properties and given privy purses (in compensation of the state's revenue which now would go the new Union). On abolition of the privy purse (and the right to the hereditary titles) by the government in 1971 the princely states ceased to exist as recognised political entities.

Mohammed Abdul Ali Azim Jah, the former Prince of Arcot, is the only former royal in India who was not affected by the abolition of privy purses. In the order of precedence, he enjoys the rank of cabinet minister of the state of Tamil Nadu.

The former Nawab hails from a family that traces its lineage back to the second caliph, Umar ibn al-Khattāb. The title 'Prince of Arcot', uniquely using the European style prince, was conferred on his ancestor by the British government in 1870 after the post of Nawab of the Carnatic (a title granted by the Mughal emperor) was abolished.

Former states sometimes still maintain and observe their ceremonies, forms of address etc. either as family traditions or as popular folk-customs. For example, processions during the popular Gangaur festival in Jaipur begin, as per tradition, from the City Palace, which remains the private residence of its former royal family.

Devgadh Baria was one of the princely states in western India which is planned on European town planning principles along with controlled architectural character at selected junctions in the town. The town is surrounded by about 250 mt high hills on three sides which dominate its skyline.

Pakistan

After independence, a new hereditary salute of 15 guns was granted in 1966 by President Ayub Khan, for the Wali of Swat, ruler of one of the last princely states to be created (1926). Before that, there were four Gun-Salute States in Pakistan: Bahawalpur, Chitral, Kalat, and Khairpur. A few lesser non-salute states also acceded to Pakistan, including Dir, Kharan, and Amb. In present-day Pakistan's tribal region in the North-West Frontier Province, the princely states were maintained until 1971, when all states were abolished by merger into the republic; all princely titles were abolished in 1972.

Kashmir was under a Maharaja, and is disputed and divided with India.

Other princely states

Sultan Maulana Mohamad Jalaluddin of Bulungan, West Kalimantan, Indonesia (1931)
  • British Empire: Princely states existed elsewhere in the British Empire. Some of these were considered by the Colonial Office (or earlier by the BHEIC) as satellites of, and usually points of support on the naval routes to, British India, some important enough to be raised to the status of salute states.
    • A number of Arab states around the Persian Gulf, including Oman, the present-day United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, were British protectorates under native rulers.
    • On the Malay peninsula a number of states, known as the Malay states, were administered by local rulers, who recognized British sovereignty; they still reign, but now constitutionally, in most constitutive states of modern Malaysia.
  • Netherlands: Indirect rule through princely states (or even mere tribal chieftaincies) was also practiced in other European nations' colonial empires. An example is the Dutch East Indies (modern Indonesia), which had dozens of local rulers (mainly Malay and Muslim, others tribal, Hindu or animist). The colonial term in Dutch was regentschap 'regency', but did not apply to lower-level fiefs.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Ramusack 2004, pp. 85 Quote: "The British did not create the Indian princes. Before and during the European penetration of India, indigenous rulers achieved dominance through the military protection they provided to dependents and their skill in acquiring revenues to maintain their military and administrative organisations. Major Indian rulers exercised varying degrees and types of sovereign powers before they entered treaty relations with the British. What changed during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries is that the British increasingly restricted the sovereignty of Indian rulers. The Company set boundaries; it extracted resources in the form of military personnel, subsidies or tribute payments, and the purchase of commercial goods at favourable prices, and limited opportunities for other alliances. From the 1810s onwards as the British expanded and consolidated their power, their centralised military despotism dramatically reduced the political options of Indian rulers. (p. 85)"
  2. ^ Ramusack 2004, p. 87 Quote: "The British system of indirect rule over Indian states ... provided a model for the efficient use of scarce monetary and personnel resources that could be adopted to imperial acquisitions in Malaya and Africa. (p. 87)"
  3. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, pp. 59-60
  4. ^ 1. Imperial Gazetteer of India, volume IV, published under the authority of the Secretary of State for India-in-Council, 1909, Oxford University Press. page 5. Quote: "The history of British India falls, as observed by Sir C. P. Ilbert in his Government of India, into three periods. From the beginning of the seventeenth century to the middle of the eighteenth century the East India Company is a trading corporation, existing on the sufferance of the native powers and in rivalry with the merchant companies of Holland and France. During the next century the Company acquires and consolidates its dominion, shares its sovereignty in increasing proportions with the Crown, and gradually loses its mercantile privileges and functions. After the mutiny of 1857 the remaining powers of the Company are transferred to the Crown, and then follows an era of peace in which India awakens to new life and progress." 2. The Statutes: From the Twentieth Year of King Henry the Third to the ... by Robert Harry Drayton, Statutes of the Realm - Law - 1770 Page 211 (3) "Save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, the law of British India and of the several parts thereof existing immediately before the appointed ..." 3. Edney, M.E. (1997) Mapping an Empire: The Geographical Construction of British India, 1765-1843, University of Chicago Press. 480 pages. ISBN 978-0-226-18488-3 4. Hawes, C.J. (1996) Poor Relations: The Making of a Eurasian Community in British India, 1773-1833. Routledge, 217 pages. ISBN 0-7007-0425-6.
  5. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. II 1908, p. 463,470 Quote1: "Before passing on to the political history of British India, which properly begins with the Anglo-French Wars in the Carnatic, ... (p.463)" Quote2: "The political history of the British in India begins in the eighteenth century with the French Wars in the Carnatic. (p.471)"
  6. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 60
  7. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 92
  8. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 93
  9. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, pp. 94-95
  10. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 96
  11. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 101
  12. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 98
  13. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 97
  14. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 99
  15. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 102
  16. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 100
  17. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 103
  18. ^ Victoria Schofield. Kashmir in conflict: India, Pakistan and the unending war.

References

External links


, ruler of the princely state of Mysore in South India, with his brothers and sisters. In 1799, his grandfather, then aged five, had been granted dominion of Mysore by the British and forced into a subsidiary alliance. The British later directly governed the state between 1831 and 1881.]]

A Princely State (also called Native State or Indian State) was a nominally sovereign[1] entity of British rule in India that was not directly administered by the British, but rather by an Indian ruler under a form of indirect rule[2] such as suzerainty or paramountcy. There were as many as 568 states in India before independence.[citation needed]

Colonial India
Portuguese India 1510–1961
Dutch India 1605–1825
Danish India 1696–1869
French India 1759–1954
British India 1613–1947
East India Company 1612–1757
Company rule in India 1757–1857
British Raj 1858–1947
British rule in Burma 1824–1867
Princely states1765–1947
Partition of India 1947

Contents

British Raj and Native States

. The palace which was built as a hunting lodge later became famous for the first white tigers that were found in the adjacent jungle and raised in the palace zoo.]]

India under the British Raj or the British Indian Empire consisted of two divisions: British India and the Native States or Princely states. In its Interpretation Act of 1889, the British Parliament adopted the following definitions:[3]
The expression British India shall mean all territories and places within Her Majesty's dominions which are for the time being governed by Her Majesty through the Governor-General of India, or through any Governor or other officer subordinate to the Governor-General of India. The expression India shall mean British India together with any territories of a Native Prince or Chief under the suzerainty of Her Majesty, exercised through the Governor-General of India, or through any Governor or other officer subordinate to the Governor-General of India..(52 & 53 Vict. cap. 63, sec. 18)

(In general the term "British India" had been used (and is still used) to also refer to the regions under the rule of the British East India Company in India from 1600 to 1858.[4] The term has also been used to refer to the "British in India."[5])

Suzerainty over 175 Princely States, some of the largest and most important, was exercised (in the name of the British Crown) by central government of British India under the Viceroy; the remaining, approximately 500, states were dependents of the provincial governments of British India under a Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, or Chief Commissioner (as the case might have been).[6] A clear distinction between "dominion" and "suzerainty" was supplied by the jurisdiction of the courts of law: the law of British India rested upon the laws passed by the British Parliament and the legislative powers those laws vested in the various governments of British India, both central and local; in contrast, the courts of the Princely States existed under the authority of the respective rulers of those states.[6]

Princely status and titles

Bhadur Khan III (seated center in an ornate chair) shown in a 1885 photograph with state officials and family.]]

The Indian rulers bore various titles—including Maharaja ("great king"), Badshah ("emperor"), Raja ("king"), Nawab ("governor"), Nizam, Wāli, and many others. Whatever the literal meaning and traditional prestige of the ruler's actual title, the British government translated them all as "prince," in order to avoid the implication that the native rulers could be "kings" with status equal to that of the British monarch.

Some Hindu rulers used the title Thakur or its variant Thakore.

More prestigious Hindu rulers (mostly existing before the Mughal Empire, or having split from such old states) often used the title "Raja," or a variant such as "Rana," "Rao," "Rawat" or Rawal. Also in this 'class' were several Thakur sahibs and a few particular titles, such as Sar Desai.

The most prestigious Hindu rulers usually had the prefix "maha" ("great", compare for example Grand duke) in their titles, as in Maharaja, Maharana, Maharao, etc. The states of Travancore and Cochin had queens regnant styled Maharani, generally the female forms applied only to sisters, spouses and widows, who could however act as regents.

There were also compound titles, such as (Maha)rajadhiraj, Raj-i-rajgan, often relics from an elaborate system of hierarchical titles under the Mughal emperors. For example, the addition of the adjective Bahadur raised the status of the titleholder one level.

Furthermore most dynasties used a variety of additional titles, such as Varma in South India. This should not be confused with various titles and suffixes not specific to princes but used by entire (sub)castes.

The Sikh princes concentrated at Punjab, usually adopted Hindu type titles when attaining princely rank; at a lower level Sardar was used.

Muslim rulers almost all used the title "Nawab" (the Arabic honorific of naib, "deputy," used of the Mughal governors, who became de facto autonomous with the decline of the Mughal Empire), with the prominent exceptions of the Nizam of Hyderabad & Berar, the Wāli/Khan of Kalat and the Wāli of Swat. Other less usual titles included Darbar Sahib, Dewan, Jam, Mehtar (unique to Chitral) and Mir (from Emir).

Precedence and prestige

, the founder of Mirpur Khas]]. Sikkim was under the suzerainty of the Provincial government of Bengal; its ruler received a 15-gun salute.]] However, the actual importance of a princely state cannot be read from the title of its ruler, which was usually granted (or at least recognised) as a favour, often in recognition for loyalty and services rendered historically by the Mughal emperor, and later by the British rulers succeeding it as paramount power (first the HEIC, de facto; later the British crown, and ultimately assuming the style Emperor of India as successor to the emperor of the abolished Mughal realm). Although some titles were raised once or even repeatedly, there was no automatic updating when a state gained or lost real power. In fact, princely titles were even awarded to holders of domains (mainly jagirs) and even zamindars (tax collectors), which were not states at all. Various sources give significantly different numbers of states and domains of the various types. Even in general, the definition of titles and domains are clearly not well-established. There is also no strict relation between the levels of the titles and the classes of gun salutes, the real measure of precedence, but merely a growing percentage of higher titles in classes with more guns.

The gun salute system was used to set unambiguously the precedence of the major rulers in the area in which the British East India Company was active, or generally of the states and their dynasties. Princely rulers were entitled to be saluted by the firing of an odd number of guns between three and 21, with a greater number of guns indicating greater prestige. (There were many minor rulers who were not entitled to any gun salutes, and as a rule the majority of gun-salute princes had at least nine, with numbers below that usually the prerogative of Arab coastal Sheikhs also under British protection.) Generally, the number of guns remained the same for all successive rulers of a particular state, but individual princes were sometimes granted additional guns on a personal basis. Furthermore, rulers were sometimes granted additional gun salutes within their own territories only, constituting a semi-promotion.

While the states of all these rulers (about 120) were known as salute states, there were far more so-called non-salute states of lower prestige, and even more princes (in the broadest sense of the term) not even acknowledged as such. On the other hand, the dynasties of certain defunct states were allowed to keep their princely status—they were known as Political Pensioners. Though none of these princes were awarded gun salutes, princely titles in this category were recognised as among certain vassals of salute states, and were not even in direct relation with the paramount power.

After independence, the Maharana of Udaipur displaced the Nizam of Hyderabad as the most senior prince in India, and the style Highness was extended to all rulers entitled to 9-gun salutes. When these dynasties had been integrated into the Indian Union they were promised continued privileges and an income, known as the Privy Purse, for their upkeep. Subsequently, when the Indian government abolished the Privy Purse in 1971, the whole princely order ceased to exist under Indian law, although many families continue to retain their social prestige informally; some descendants are still prominent in regional or national politics, diplomacy, business and high society.

At the time of Indian independence, only five rulers—the Nizam of Hyderabad, the Maharaja of Mysore, the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir state, the Maharaja Gaekwad of Baroda and the Maharaja Scindia of Gwalior—were entitled to a 21-gun salute. Five more rulers—the Nawab of Bhopal, the Maharaja Holkar of Indore, the Maharana of Udaipur, the Maharaja of Kolhapur and the Maharaja of Travancore—were entitled to 19-gun salutes. The most senior princely ruler was the Nizam of Hyderabad, who was entitled to the unique style Exalted Highness. Other princely rulers entitled to salutes of 11 guns (soon 9 guns too) or more were entitled to the style Highness. No special style was used by rulers entitled to lesser gun salutes.

As paramount ruler, and successor to the Mughals, the British King-Emperor of India, for whom the style of Majesty was reserved, was entitled to an 'imperial' 101-gun salute—in the European tradition also the number of guns fired to announce the birth of a (male) heir to the throne.

All princely rulers were eligible to be appointed to certain British orders of chivalry associated with India, The Most Exalted Order of the Star of India and The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire. Even women could be appointed as "Knights" (instead of Dames) of these orders. Rulers entitled to 21-gun and 19-gun salutes were normally appointed to the highest rank possible (Knight Grand Commander of the Order of the Star of India).

Many Indian princes served in the British army (as others in local guard or police forces), often rising to the high official ranks; some even served while on the throne. Many of these were appointed as ADC etc., either to the ruling prince of their own house (in the case of relatives of such rulers) or indeed to the British King-Emperor. Many also saw action, both on the subcontinent and on other fronts, during both World Wars.

It was also not unusual for members of princely houses to be appointed to various colonial offices, often far from their native state, or to enter the diplomatic corps.

Doctrine of lapse

A controversial aspect of East India Company rule was the doctrine of lapse, a policy under which lands whose feudal ruler died (or otherwise became unfit to rule) without a male biological heir (as opposed to an adopted son) would become directly controlled by the Company and an adopted son would not become the ruler of the princely state. This policy went counter to Indian tradition where unlike Europe it was far more the accepted norm for a ruler to appoint his own heir.

The doctrine of lapse was pursued most vigorously by the Governor-General Sir James Ramsay, 10th Earl (later 1st Marquess) of Dalhousie. Dalhousie annexed seven states including Awadh (Oudh), whose Nawabs he had accused of misrule and the Maratha states of Nagpur, Jhansi, Satara. Resentment over the annexation of these states turned to indignation when the heirlooms of the Maharajas of Nagpur were auctioned off in Calcutta. Dalhousie's actions contributed to the rising discontent amongst the upper castes which played a large part in the outbreak of the Indian rebellion of 1857. The last Mughal Badshah (emperor), whom many of the mutineers saw as a figurehead to rally around, was deposed following its suppression.

In response to the unpopularity of the doctrine, it was discontinued with the end of company rule and the formation of the Indian Empire, and no further states were absorbed in such a way.

Colonial governance

visiting the British resident and his staff at the Residency.]]

By the beginning of the 20th century, the four largest states—Hyderabad State, Mysore, Jammu and Kashmir, and Baroda—were directly under the authority of the Governor-General of India, in the person of a British Resident. Two agencies, Rajputana Agency and Central India Agency, oversaw 20 and 148 princely states, respectively. The remaining princely states had political officers, or Agents, who answered to the administrators of India's provinces. Five princely states were then under the authority of Madras, 354 under Bombay, 26 of Bengal, 2 under Assam, 34 under Punjab, 15 under Central Provinces and Berar and 2 under United Provinces.

By the early 1930s, most of the princely states under the authority of India's provinces were organised into new agencies, answerable to the Governor-general, on the model of the Central India - and Rajputana agencies: the Eastern States Agency, Punjab States Agency, Baluchistan Agency, Deccan States Agency, Madras States Agency and the Northwest Frontier States Agency. The Baroda residency was combined with the princely states of northern Bombay Presidency into the Baroda, Western States and Gujarat Agency. Gwalior was separated from the Central India Agency and placed under its own Resident, and the states of Rampur and Benares, formerly under the authority of the United Provinces, were placed under the Gwalior Residency in 1936. The princely states of Sandur and Banganapalle in Mysore Presidency were transferred to the authority of the Mysore Resident in 1939.

Short list of Native States in 1909

The native states in 1909 included five large states that were in "direct political relations" with the Government of India. Of these, Nepal, differed from others, in that it was independent in its internal administration, but was represented internationally by the Government of India.[7] For the complete list of princely states in 1947, see List of Indian Princely States.

Under suzerainty of the Central Government

Five large Princely States in direct political relations with the Central Government in India[7]
Name of Princely State Area in Square Miles Population in 1901 Approximate Revenue of the State (in hundred thousand Rupees) Title, ethnicity, and religion of ruler Gun-Salute for Ruler Designation of local political officer
Hyderabad 82,698 approx. 11.14 million (Hindus and Muslims) 359 Nizam, Turk, Sunni Muslim 21 Resident in Hyderabad
Mysore 29,444 5.53 million (mostly Hindu) 190 Maharaja, Arasu, Hindu 21 Resident in Mysore
Baroda 8,099 1.95 million (chiefly Hindu) 123 Maharaja, Maratha, Hindu 21 Resident at Baroda
Kashmir and Jammu 80,900 2.91 million including Gilgit, Baltistan (Skardu), Ladakh, Chitral and Punch (Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists) 87 Maharaja, Dogra Rajput, Hindu 19 (21 within Kashmir) Resident in Kashmir
Total 445,891 25.54 million 909
Central India Agency, Rajputana Agency and the Baluchistan Agency

Under a Provincial Government

Burma (52 States)
52 States in Burma: all except the Karen States were included in British India[11]
Name of Princely State Area in Square Miles Population in 1901 Approximate Revenue of the State (in hundred thousand Rupees) Title, ethnicity, and religion of ruler Gun-Salute for Ruler Designation of local political officer
Hsipaw (Thibaw) 5,086 105,000 (Buddhist) 3 Sawbwa, Shan, Buddhist 9 Superintendent, Northern Shan States
Kengtung 12,000 190,000 (Buddhist) 1 Sawbwa, Shan, Buddhist 9 Superintendent Southern Shan States
Mongnai 2,717 44,000 (Buddhist) 0.5 Sawbwa, Shan, Buddhist 9 Superintendent Southern Shan States
5 Karen States 4,830 45,795 (Buddhist and Animists) 0.5 Superintendent Southern Shan States
44 Other States 42,198 792,152 (Buddhist and Animist) 8.5
Total 67,011 1,177,987 13.5
Other states under provincial governments

Accession

The British parliament passed the Indian Independence Act 1947 on 11 July 1947 giving the native states three choices: to remain independent or to accede to either of the two new dominions, the Union of India or the Dominion of Pakistan. The accession was to be chosen by the ruler of the state and not by the population—though, in practice, there were exceptions to this rule. Most acceded peacefully, except for four: Junagadh, Hyderabad, Jammu and Kashmir and Tripura.

Junagadh, the largest state in the Kathiawar peninsula of Saurashtra, Gujarat, was a princely state with a Muslim ruler over a Hindu majority. Its Nawab Muhammad Mahabat Khanji III wanted to join Pakistan and signed the instrument of accession that was accepted by Pakistan on 15 September 1947. Junagadh had contiguous border with only India and not with Pakistan. India stopped supply of all goods to Junagadh. On 25 October the Nawab fled to Pakistan's capital Karachi. The Junagadh State Council convened on 7 November and decided that the Indian Government should be requested to take over the administration of Junagadh. Sir Shah Nawaz Bhutto, the dewan (or Chief Minister) of Junagadh conveyed this to the Indian government in writing the next day.

In Hyderabad, a similar fate befell a Muslim dynasty which had been the highest in rank since the abolition of the Mughals at Delhi and the Kingdom of Oudh. The Muslim ruler of Hyderbad Osman Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VII, the last Nizam, and his followers, Razakars, wished to remain independent. The Indian Government carried out the so called “Hyderabad Police Action” against the Nizam. Code-named “Operation Polo” by the Indian military, this action by the Indian armed forces' ended the rule of the Nizams of Hyderabad and led to the incorporation of the princely state of Hyderabad into the Indian Union.

Jammu and Kashmir had a Muslim majority but was ruled by a Hindu Raja. The Muslim League-dominated legislative assembly issued one statement that represented the will of the Muslim people: “After carefully considering the position, the conference has arrived at the conclusion that accession of the State to Pakistan is absolutely necessary in view of the geographic, economic, linguistic, cultural and religious conditions… It is therefore necessary that the State should accede to Pakistan."

The Maharaja Hari Singh, reluctant, would have preferred to remain independent, but was advised by his later Prime Minister, Mehr Chand Mahajan, that a landlocked country such as Kashmir would be soon engulfed by foreign powers such as the USSR or China.[18]

However, M.A. Jinnah, creator and Governor-General of Pakistan, included Kashmir in his concept of Pakistan. The British-controlled Gilgit Scouts staged a rebellion in the Northern Areas, as a result of which this region became effectively a part of Pakistan, unilaterally without a referendum and is up to the present being administered by Pakistan as a part of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK)

The Tribal Kabailis of the North West Frontier Province attacked and ravaged Kashmir proper, with the help of the Pakistan armed forces which were still controlled and administered by British officers.

With an independence no longer an option, the Maharaja now turned to India, requesting troops for safeguarding Kashmir. Though Indian Prime Minister Nehru was ready to send the troops, the acting Governor General of India, Lord Mountbatten of Burma advised the Maharaja to accede to India before she can send her troops. Hence, considering the emergency situation he signed the instrument of accession to the Union of India. However, evidence proved that long before the Maharaja could meet the Indian Prime Minister, Nehru, and sign the instrument of accession,India had sent forces into Kashmir. After not being able to push back the Pakistani tribals and people of Gilgit, Nehru under Mountbatten's advise took the matter to the UN, insisting that Jammu and Kashmir's accession to India was legal,the UN did not agree and Nehru promised the people of Kashmir the choice to join either India or Pakistan after a plebiscite and also mentioned, "If the people don't want to be part of the Indian union, then even though it might hurt us, we will accept their choice."

United Nations Security Council Resolution 47 was adopted on 21 April 1948, stating that "(...) After hearing arguments from both India and Pakistan, the Council increased the size of the Commission established by United Nations Security Council Resolution 39 to five members, instructed the Commission to go to the subcontinent and help the governments of India and Pakistan restore peace and order to the region and prepare for a plebiscite to decide the fate of Kashmir".

The resolution further recommended that in order to ensure the impartiality of the plebiscite, Pakistan withdraw all tribesmen and nationals who entered the region for the purpose of fighting, and that India to also remove all her troops. The Commission was also to send as many observers into the region as it deemed necessary to ensure the provisions of the resolution were enacted" United Nations Security Council Resolution 47.

In practice, the resolution failed to resolve the problem, which remains unresolved up to the present. At the time and up to the present, Pakistanis and Kashmiri separatists accused India of having acted with a double standard - i.e., acting according to the wish of a majority Hindu population where the ruler was Muslim (as in the case of Hyderabad) and according to the wishes of the Hindu ruler where the majority population was Muslim. (As Kashmir was no longer a Princely state, further developments fall outside the scope of the present page, and can be found in Kashmir#Post-1948 developments).

Tripura remained an independent kingdom after the Partition of India, until it joined India 2 years later under the Tripura Merger Agreement.

Post-independence

India

On accession by a princely state, its territories and administrations merged into the Union of India. The rulers of the princely states were allowed to retain their hereditary titles and official residences. Depending upon their size, importance and revenue they were also allowed to retain additional properties and given privy purses (in compensation of the state's revenue which now would go the new Union). On abolition of the privy purse (and the right to the hereditary titles) by the government in 1971 the princely states ceased to exist as recognised political entities.

Mohammed Abdul Ali Azim Jah, the former Prince of Arcot, is the only former royal in India who was not affected by the abolition of privy purses. In the order of precedence, he enjoys the rank of cabinet minister of the state of Tamil Nadu.

The former Nawab hails from a family that traces its lineage back to the second caliph, Umar ibn al-Khattāb. The title 'Prince of Arcot', uniquely using the European style prince, was conferred on his ancestor by the British government in 1870 after the post of Nawab of the Carnatic (a title granted by the Mughal emperor) was abolished.

Former states sometimes still maintain and observe their ceremonies, forms of address etc. either as family traditions or as popular folk-customs. For example, processions during the popular Gangaur festival in Jaipur begin, as per tradition, from the City Palace, which remains the private residence of its former royal family.

Devgadh Baria was one of the princely states in western India which is planned on European town planning principles along with controlled architectural character at selected junctions in the town. The town is surrounded by about 250 mt high hills on three sides which dominate its skyline.

Pakistan

After independence, a new hereditary salute of 15 guns was granted in 1966 by President Ayub Khan, for the Wali of Swat, ruler of one of the last princely states to be created (1926). Before that, there were four Gun-Salute States in Pakistan: Bahawalpur, Chitral, Kalat, and Khairpur. A few lesser non-salute states also acceded to Pakistan, including Dir, Kharan, and Amb. In present-day Pakistan's tribal region in the North-West Frontier Province, the princely states were maintained until 1971, when all states were abolished by merger into the republic; all princely titles were abolished in 1972.

Kashmir was under a Maharaja, and is disputed and divided with India.

Other princely states

  • British Empire: Princely states existed elsewhere in the British Empire. Some of these were considered by the Colonial Office (or earlier by the BHEIC) as satellites of, and usually points of support on the naval routes to, British India, some important enough to be raised to the status of salute states.
    • A number of Arab states around the Persian Gulf, including Oman, the present-day United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, were British protectorates under native rulers.
    • On the Malay peninsula a number of states, known as the Malay states, were administered by local rulers, who recognized British sovereignty; they still reign, but now constitutionally, in most constitutive states of modern Malaysia.
  • Netherlands: Indirect rule through princely states (or even mere tribal chieftaincies) was also practiced in other European nations' colonial empires. An example is the Dutch East Indies (modern Indonesia), which had dozens of local rulers (mainly Malay and Muslim, others tribal, Hindu or animist). The colonial term in Dutch was regentschap 'regency', but did not apply to lower-level fiefs.
  • It is not customary to use the term princely state, although it would be technically correct, for western principalities, neither in the feudal past (there were many, especially in the Holy Roman Empire, see Fürst) nor for the presently independent Principality of Monaco or Principality of Liechtenstein, nor for non-sovereign entities referred to as principalities such as Wales.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Ramusack 2004, pp. 85 Quote: "The British did not create the Indian princes. Before and during the European penetration of India, indigenous rulers achieved dominance through the military protection they provided to dependents and their skill in acquiring revenues to maintain their military and administrative organisations. Major Indian rulers exercised varying degrees and types of sovereign powers before they entered treaty relations with the British. What changed during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries is that the British increasingly restricted the sovereignty of Indian rulers. The Company set boundaries; it extracted resources in the form of military personnel, subsidies or tribute payments, and the purchase of commercial goods at favourable prices, and limited opportunities for other alliances. From the 1810s onwards as the British expanded and consolidated their power, their centralised military despotism dramatically reduced the political options of Indian rulers. (p. 85)"
  2. ^ Ramusack 2004, p. 87 Quote: "The British system of indirect rule over Indian states ... provided a model for the efficient use of scarce monetary and personnel resources that could be adopted to imperial acquisitions in Malaya and Africa. (p. 87)"
  3. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, pp. 59-60
  4. ^ 1. Imperial Gazetteer of India, volume IV, published under the authority of the Secretary of State for India-in-Council, 1909, Oxford University Press. page 5. Quote: "The history of British India falls, as observed by Sir C. P. Ilbert in his Government of India, into three periods. From the beginning of the seventeenth century to the middle of the eighteenth century the East India Company is a trading corporation, existing on the sufferance of the native powers and in rivalry with the merchant companies of Holland and France. During the next century the Company acquires and consolidates its dominion, shares its sovereignty in increasing proportions with the Crown, and gradually loses its mercantile privileges and functions. After the mutiny of 1857 the remaining powers of the Company are transferred to the Crown, and then follows an era of peace in which India awakens to new life and progress." 2. The Statutes: From the Twentieth Year of King Henry the Third to the ... by Robert Harry Drayton, Statutes of the Realm - Law - 1770 Page 211 (3) "Save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, the law of British India and of the several parts thereof existing immediately before the appointed ..." 3. Edney, M.E. (1997) Mapping an Empire: The Geographical Construction of British India, 1765-1843, University of Chicago Press. 480 pages. ISBN 978-0-226-18488-3 4. Hawes, C.J. (1996) Poor Relations: The Making of a Eurasian Community in British India, 1773-1833. Routledge, 217 pages. ISBN 0-7007-0425-6.
  5. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. II 1908, p. 463,470 Quote1: "Before passing on to the political history of British India, which properly begins with the Anglo-French Wars in the Carnatic, ... (p.463)" Quote2: "The political history of the British in India begins in the eighteenth century with the French Wars in the Carnatic. (p.471)"
  6. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 60
  7. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 92
  8. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 93
  9. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, pp. 94-95
  10. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 96
  11. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 101
  12. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 98
  13. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 97
  14. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 99
  15. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 102
  16. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 100
  17. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India vol. IV 1907, p. 103
  18. ^ Victoria Schofield. Kashmir in conflict: India, Pakistan and the unending war.

References

External links


Simple English

A princely state (also called a native state or Indian state) was a state within the former British Indian Empire where a native Indian prince held rule on behalf of the British rather than them holding direct control over the state. In reality the British still controlled the state as they had control over the local ruler.


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