Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Discontent and disaffection of the Sepoys

The discontent and the disaffection against the British Raj was not only confined to civil population but also extended to the Indian section of the army of the East India Company.
The East India Company's army in India consisted of two sections. 1. In which both the officers and rank and file were Englishmen, 2. In which commissioned officers were Englishmenand the rank and file were Indians.
The armies of Bombay, Madras and Bengal were at first independent of one another, each under its own Commander-in-chief. But towards the close of the eighteenth centurythe Bengal army became the army of the cintral Government and its commander-in-chief became the head of
the company's military establishment.
As the British dominion extendedin all directions additional troops outside the regular cadre became necessary. This led to the recruitment of troops with special military qualities observed  during their fighting against British. These were irregular battalions of Gorkhas, Sikhs raised after the battle of Nepal and Sikh.
In addition to the regular and irregular troops maintained by the company there were troops maintained by the Indian rulersunder the terms of subsidiary alliances whose expenses were borne the Indian rulers.