What was Butler Commission?

Harcourt Butler Committee or Butler Commission was a three -member committee headed by Harcourt Butler, appointed on December 16, 1927 to examine the relations between the native states and the paramount power, declined to define what paramountcy was but clearly and fortrightly stated that “paramountcy must remain paramount”. The committee fully endorsed that the viceroy, not the governor general should remain the Crown agent in dealing with the native states. In fact the right to protect includes right to internal intervention. Paramountcy is the supreme sovereign power which was kept above the reach of law and interpretation, to be exercised at the appropriate time subject to restraints of morality and constitutional propriety against an erring ruler of a native state when other correctional means had proved to be futile. It is a concept developed into a deterrent in the political relation between the British and the Indian rulers.

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