The execution of which among the following Indians during the British India is commonly called a Judicial murder?

Answer: [C] Nandakumar

Although Maharaja Nandakumar assisted the British during the Battle of Plassey (1757), but he seemed to be hostile to the British, particularly Warren Hastings . In 1775, a year after Warren Hastings became the Governor-General, Nandakumar accused him of accepting bribes from the Nawab and others. Hastings retaliated by accusing him of conspiring to coerce a third party to make the bribery accusation against him.

The charge was soon dismissed, but an accusation of forgery was brought against the Maharaja in an unrelated case. Despite the fact that the person who levelled the charges against him was an Indian, Nandakumar’s case was judged under British laws under which convictions for forgery carried capital punishment. A newly- established British court at Kolkata sentenced him to death.  Nandakumar was publicly hanged on the banks of the Hooghly at Kidderpur at a place known as Collie Bajar. Sir Elijah Impey — the presiding judge who sentenced Nandakumar  to death — was a close friend of Warren Hastings.

Thus, the hanging of Nandakumar was termed “Judicial Killing” by Edmund Burke and Lord Thomas Babington Macaulay. Further,  Nandakumar’s graft charge against Hastings was one of the early acts of rebellion against the British rule, and heralded one of the most  important periods of British history in India.

This question is a part of GKToday's Integrated IAS General Studies Module