End of monopoly of the East India Company- Charter Act of 1813

20 years after the charter of 1793 was renewed, the charter timed out and was to be renewed.

  • During 1798 to 1805, Lord Wellesley served as the Governor General of India. The 7 years tenure of Lord Wellesley is known to be an important phase in the development of British power in India. His policy allowed him to remove all kinds of French influence from India and he established the British the paramount power in this subcontinent. He was successful in wars and was known to be an aggressive implementer of Policy of annexations. But this aggressive policy of annexations plunged the company into financial difficulties.

    This was also an era of successes for Napoleon Bonaparte whose Berlin decree of 1806 & Milan Decree of 1807 forbade the import of British goods into European countries allied with or dependent upon France, and installed the Continental System in Europe.

    These circumstances posed hardships to British traders, and they demanded entry to the ports of Asia. But the East India Company clamored that its political authority and commercial privileges cannot be separated. The controversy was later resolved by allowing all the British merchants to trade with India under a strict license system.

  • Thus the Charter act of 1813 ended the monopoly of the East India Company in India, however the company’s monopoly in trade with china and trade in tea was remained intact.
  • The charter act of 1813, for the first time explicitly defined the constitutional position of the British territories in India.
  • This act also made provisions to grant permission to the persons who wished to go to India for promoting moral and religious improvements. (Christian Missionaries)
  • This act regulated the company’s territorial revenues and commercial profits.
  • The company debt was to be reduced and dividend was fixed @10.5% per annum.
  • There was also a provision that Company should invest Rs. 1 Lakh every year on the education of Indians.
  • This act also empowered the local governments to impose taxes on the persons subject to the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.
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