The cause of Nana Sahib 1854-55

Nana Sahib was the adopted son of Last Peshwa Baji Rao II who had been retired to Bithoor, after the Third Anglo Maratha War. Baji Rao was receiving the pension of Rupees 8 Lakh per annum from the British. When he died, Nana Sahib was to get this pension as heir-presumptive to the throne. But the company stopped the pension on the ground that he was not a natural born heir. Nana Sahib sent his friend and envoy Azimullah Khan to England in 1853 to plead his cause but the British were not convinced. The result was that he conspired against the British and led the revolt at Kanpur.

So far, Azimullah Khan, who was prime minister to Nana Sahib, was an English lover. But at England, he could not plead the cause of Nana Sahib and while returning from England, he got an opportunity to visit Constantinople, in the Ottoman Empire. He visited the sites of the Crimean war and was able to look at the exhausted British soldiers returning. He also tried to get in touch with the Turkish and Russian spies.

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