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Choudhury, Deba Prosad (1970) British Policy on the North-East Frontier of India, 1865-1914. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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The purpose of the present thesis is to analyse British policy on the north-east frontier of India between 1865 and 1914. The recent dispute between India and China over this area gives added significance to this subject. Until the early years of the twentieth century, the government was concerned with the local problem of dealing with the tribesmen of the frontier. There was no pressure of a foreign power to make this frontier a subject of international importance. The government's main objective at this time was to maintain peaceful relations with the tribes by means of a policy of non-interference. Troubles with the tribes were however a familiar occurrence, and the government tried to deal with the situation by economic and military measures. But the British never tried to occupy and directly administer the tribal country. This policy might have continued well into the twentieth century, had not the frontier witnessed Chinese pressure from the north after the Chinese seizure of Lhasa in 1910. This new situation forced the British to part with the former policy which was not suited to meet an international tension here. Although they were still reluctant to administer the area directly, they decided to bring it under a sort of political control. The culmination of this new policy was the negotiation of the Indo-Tibetan boundary in 1914 during the Siml a Conference. Besides published sources, the relevant Private Papers and the archives of the India Office Library and Public Record Office have been utilised for the present study.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2020 17:37

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