Consolidation of the Indian Judiciary- Charter Act 1793

By 1793, when the company’s charter timed out the British parliament passed a new charter which authorized the company to carry on trade with the East Indies for next 20 years.

  • The company was allowed to increase its dividend to 10%.
  • A provision in the Charter act of 1793 was made that the company, after paying the necessary expenses, interest, dividend, salaries, etc from the Indian Revenues will pay 5 Lakh British pounds annually out of the surplus revenue to the British Government. However, the act also had a provision, that Crown could order the application of the whole of the revenue for the purpose of defense if the circumstances posed such demands.

    Some other Provisions:

  • The Governor General was empowered to disregard the majority in special circumstances.
  • The Governor General and respective governors of the other presidencies could now override the respective councils, and the commander in chief was not now the member of Governor General’s council, unless he was specially appointed to be a member by the Court of Directors.
  • If a high official departed from India without permission, it was to be treated as resignation.
  • The charter act 1793 can be called an act for consolidation of the Indian Judiciary. This act reorganized the courts and redefined their jurisdictions. The revenue administration was divorced from the judiciary functions and this led to disappearing of the Maal Adalats. The revenue cases were now referred to Zillah adalats or district courts. Court of appeal were made 5 provincial courts at Calcutta, Patna, Dhaka & Murshidabad.
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