Read all about Bengal Province. The Bengali governorship was given to Murshid Kuli Khan by Mughal Emperor Farrukshiyar in 1717. He attained the titles of Nizam (governor) and Diwan (revenue collector), which gave him nearly all authority and helped Murshid Kuli Khan establish his dominance in Bengal. Beginning in 1727, Shuja-ud-din held the position of Nawab till Alivardi Khan succeeded him in 1739. His relationship with the Mughal Empire was effectively destroyed.
Siraj-ud-daula succeeded Alivardi Khan as the Nawab of Bengal after his passing in 1756. This post will highlight Bengal Province, which is useful for preparing for the UPSC Examination.
Read about: Partition of Bengal
Bengal Province History
Under Murshid Quli Khan, Bengal eventually escaped Mughal rule. To systematise the collection of taxes in the Bengal Province, Aurangzeb appointed Murshid Quli Khan as Dewan (collector of revenue) in 1700. He was thereafter appointed Governor (Nazim) of Bengal in 1717. Murshid Quli Khan was given the unusual opportunity to wield the dual positions of nazim and diwan at this time. Having two offices allowed Murshid Quli to further consolidate his position in Bengal.
Murshid Quli Khan frequently paid money to the iishrat
mperial treasury while abstaining from openly challenging Mughal rule (Mughal). However, Murshid Quli began to enjoy a significant level of autonomy inside his own area and started what was essentially a dynasty rule behind the formal loyalty to the Mughal Emperors. He was, in fact, the Mughal Emperor’s final choice to serve as governor of Bengal.
During Murshid Quli Khan’s tenure, there were three significant uprisings. Sitaram Ray, Udai Narayan, and Ghulam Muhammad presented their work first, followed by Shujat Khan and Najat Khan. Murshid Quli Khan defeated them and gave Ramjivan their zamandaris (his favourite). After the death of Murshid Quli Khan in 1727, Bengal was controlled by his son-in-law Shuja-ud-din till 1739. Murshid Quli’s highly effective leadership was the cornerstone of his authority.
Read about: Later Mughal
Under the direction of Murshid Quli Khan, who was designated as the province’s naib, or deputy governor, Bengal progressively emancipated itself from Mughal rule. Murshid Quli Khan promptly took all the authority that came with the position despite never having been a recognised subadar. Along with the kings of Hyderabad and Awadh, he was in charge of the state’s tax management.
In an effort to lessen Mughal power in Bengal, he ordered the transfer of all Mughal jagirdars to Orissa and a thorough review of Bengal’s revenues. Cash payments were made to all zamindars with tremendous zeal. Many zamindars were consequently compelled to obtain loans from banks and moneylenders. Those who couldn’t afford their debts were compelled to sell their holdings to more powerful zamindars.
As a result, the zamindars underwent a dramatic change as a result of the establishment of a regional state in Bengal in the eighteenth century. During Alivardi Khan’s tenure (r. 1740–1756), bankers and the state had a tight working connection in Bengal as well as Hyderabad and Awadh. Jagat Seth’s banking business flourished during his rule.
Murshid Quli Khan
Quli Khan was chosen by Aurangzeb to serve as Diwan of Bengal sometime around 1700. At that time, the subahdar of the province was Azim-us-Shan, grandson of the Mughal emperor. After being appointed to the position, Quli Khan went to Jahangirnagar (modern-day Dhaka) and transferred workers from Azim-us-services Shan’s to himself, angering Azim-us-Shan.
He made an effort to defend the interests of his region by obstructing tax collection by the English East India Company. Shujauddin Khan, his son-in-law, assumed control of affairs and overthrew the Bihari administration to annex Suba to Bengal. Murshid Quli Khan and his successor Nawabs ruled as autonomous monarchs in Bengal, Bihar, and Odisha, yet they continued to provide income to the Mughal emperor on a regular basis.
In place of Dhaka, Murshidabad was chosen as the new capital. The Mughal jagirdari system was replaced by Quli Khan’s Mal Jasmani system, which was analogous to France’s generals. He got security bonds from the Ijaradars, the contractors who would later get the proceeds from the sale of the land.
Although there were many jagirdars at first, the contractors, known as zamindars, quickly drove them out. Quli Khan persisted in his practice of distributing a percentage of the wealth amassed to the Mughal Empire.
Nawabs of Bengal
Murshid Quli Khan was chosen by Aurangzeb to be the Diwan of Bengal. He made an effort to defend the interests of his region by obstructing revenue collection for the English East India Company. Murshid Quli Khan’s son-in-law Shujauddin Khan assumed control of the administration and conquered Suba, Bihar, so that it would become a part of Bengal. Shuja’s son was crowned by Sarfaraz Khan. He adopted Alam-ud-daula Haider Jung as his name.
Alivardi Khan received a Farman from Emperor Muhammad after paying Rs. 2 crore, which made his usurpation legitimate. He chose and proposed Siraj-ud-daula, his youngest daughter’s son, as his replacement. The English were forbidden by Siraj-ud-daula from protecting their factories in Calcutta, but it was their disobedience of his instructions that led to the Battle of Plassey, where English men participated.
The Zamindari of Chittagong, Midnapore, and Burdman were given to the British by Mir Qasim. He put into effect a number of tax and military changes to solidify his position. In addition to the 24 Parganas Zamindar, Mir Jafar granted the British the right to free trade in Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa. He also goes by the name Clive’s Jackel. Following the start of the conflict with Mir Qasim, the British restored him. The son of Mir Jafar, Najm-ud-daula, later assumed the title of Nawab and remained a British puppet during the era of the “Dual System of Government.”
Bengal Province Decline
The Bengal governors were shown to be careless and lacking in perspective. They did not decisively condemn the English East India Company’s growing propensity to employ force after 1707. They had the power to deal with the Company’s threats, but they continued to believe that a mere trading company could not threaten their power. They failed to see that the English Company was no mere company of traders but was the representative of the most aggressive colonialism of that time.
The Bengali Nawabs paid a high price for failing to create a powerful army. For instance, Murshid Quli Khan’s army only had 4,000 infantry and 2000 cavalry. Alivard Khan was continually plagued by the Marathas’ frequent incursions, and in the end he was forced to cede a sizable portion of Orissa to them. And when the English East India Company waged war against Siraj-ud-Daulah, the Alivardi heir, in 1756–1757, the lack of a powerful army greatly aided the East India Company’s victory.
Bengal Province UPSC
Bengal Province is important part of history for Preparation of UPSC Examination. Read all about the Bengal Province in details for UPSC Preparation in this article.