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Dasgupta, Amarprasad (1929) Relations of the Governor General and Council With the Governor and Council of Madras Under the Regulating Act of 1773. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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The nominal control given by the Regulating Act to Bengal over the other presidencies in matters of peace and war resulted in constant friction between the superintending and subordinate presidencies. From 1775 to 1779 there was no marked dispute between the supreme council and Madras. In 1779 the transactions of the Madras government annoyed the Nizam, and the Bengal government intervened in order to prevent the Nizam from becoming an active enemy of the English, whereupon the Madras government taking advantage of the vague nature of the Regulating Act challenged the powers of Bengal to interfere. It has been shown that the intervention of Bengal was legal, and the attitude of Rumbold narrow. The Madras government maintained an attitude of opposition until the supreme council suspended their president, Whitehill, and established their superiority. This was aided by the fact that Haidar Ali was in the Carnatic and Madras totally dependent on Bengal for carrying on the war. Bengal could not retain this supremacy for long. Lord Macartney failed to win the friendship of the governor general in spite of his honest efforts. The quarrel between the presidencies was renewed. Hastings stretched his authority over Madras in proportion to his growing distrust of Macartney. Coote complicated the situation further. The personal factor made the normally difficult working of the Act absolutely impossible. Affairs reached the climax in 1783 and 1784 when Madras refused to obey the orders of Bengal which were in excess of legal powers, and to abide by unnecessary restrictions on their rights. Throughout, the justification for any illegal intervention of the supreme council lay in the fact that the responsibility for the general well-being rested on them. The experiment over ten years taught that harmonious relations between the presidencies were impossible under such a system. Accordingly larger powers of control were given to the supreme council by the India Act of 1784.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2020 17:26

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