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MUTINY

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Originally appearing in Volume V14, Page 415 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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MUTINY.) The Mutiny sealed the fate of the East India company, after a life of more than two and a half centuries. The Act for the Better Government of India (1858), which finally transferred the entire administration from the company to the crown, was not passed without an eloquent protest from the directors, nor without acrimonious party discussion in parliament. It enacts that India shall be governed by, and in the name of, the sovereign of England through a principal secretary of state, assisted by a council. The governor-general received the new title of viceroy. The European troops of the company, numbering about 24,000 officers and men, were amalgamated with the royal service, and the Indian navy was abolished. By the Indian Councils Act 1861 the governor-general's council and also the councils at Madras and Bombay were augmented by the addition of non-official members, either natives or Europeans, for legislative purposes only; and by another act passed in the same year high courts of judicature were constituted out of the existing Transfer to the Crown. It fell to the lot of Lord Canning both to suppress the Mutiny and to introduce the peaceful revolution . that followed. As regards his execution of the former part of his duties, it is sufficient to say that he- preserved his equanimity undisturbed in the darkest hours of peril, and that the strict impartiality of his conduct incurred alternate praise and blame from the fanatics on either side. The epithet then scornfully applied to him of "Clemency" Canning is now remembered only to his honour. On November 1, 1858, at a grand durbar held at Allahabad the royal proclamation was published which announced that the queen had assumed the government of India. This document, which has been called the Magna Charta of the Indian people, went on to explain the policy of political justice and religious toleration which it was her royal pleasure to pursue, and granted an amnesty to all except those who had directly taken part in the murder of British subjects, Peace was pro-claimed throughout India on the 8th of July 1859; and in the following cold season Lord Canning made a , viceregal progress through the upper provinces, to receive the homage of loyal princes and chiefs, and to guarantee to them the right of adoption. The suppression of the Mutiny increased the debt of India by about 40 millions sterling, and the military changes that ensued augmented the annual expenditure by about Io millions. To grapple with this deficit, James Wilson was sent out from the treasury as financial member of council. He reorganized the customs system, imposed an income tax and licence duty and created a state paper currency. The penal code, originally drawn up by Macaulay in 1837, passed into law in 186m, together with codes of civil and criminal procedure. Lord Canning left India in March 1862, and died before he had been a month in England. His successor, Lord Elgin, only lived till November 1863, when he too fell a victim to the excessive work of the governor-generalship, dying at the Himalayan station of Dharmsala, where he lies buried. He was succeeded by Sir John Lawrence, the saviour of the Punjab. The chief incidents of his administration were the Bhutan war and the terrible Orissa famine of 1866. Lord Mayo, who succeeded him in 1869, carried on the permanent British policy of moral and material progress with a special degree of personal energy. The Umballa durbar, at which ' Shere Ali was recognized as amir of Afghanistan, though in one sense the completion of what Lord Lawrence had begun, owed much of its success to the personal influence of Lord Mayo himself. The same quality, combined with sympathy and firmness, stood him in good stead in all. his dealings both with native chiefs and European officials; His example of hard work stimulated all to their best. While engaged in exploring with his Own eyes the furthest corners of the empire, he fell by the hand of an assassin in the convict settlement of the Andaman islands in 1872. His successor :Was Lord Northbrook; whose ability showed' itself chiefly in the department of finance. During the time of his administration a famine in Lower Bengal in 1874 was successfully obviated by government relief and public works, though at an enormous cost; the gaekwar of Baroda was dethroned in 1875 for misgovernment and disloyalty, while his dominions were continued to a nominated child of the family; and the prince of Wales (Edward VII.) visited the country in the cold season of 1875-I$76. Lord Lytton followed Lord Northbrook in 1876. On the 1st Of January 1897 Queen Victoria was proclaimed empress of India at a durbar of great magnificence, held on the historic "Ridge" overlooking the Mogul capital Delhi. But, while the princes and high officials of the country were flocking to this gorgeous scene, the shadow of famine was already darkening over the south of India. Both the monsoons of 1876 had failed to bring their due supply of rain, and the season of 1877 was little 'better. The consequences of this prolonged drought, which extended from Cape Comorin to the Deccan, and subsequently invaded northern India, were more disastrous than any similar calamity
End of Article: MUTINY
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MUTILATION (from Lat. mutilus, maimed)
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