The First Secretary of State of India: Lord Stanley

The first Secretary of state was Lord Stanley, who prior to 2 August 1858, served as President of the Board of Control. The Secretary of State was now the political head of the India. Please note the following points:

  • In 1935, the Government of India Act 1935 provided a new Burma Office, in preparation for the establishment of Burma as a separate colony, but the same Secretary of State headed both Departments and was styled the Secretary of State for India and Burma.
  • The first secretary of state for India and Burma was Lord Dundas. The India Office of the Secretary of State for India and Burma came to an end in 1947, when we got independence and now the Secretary of state of India and Burma was left to be Secretary of Burma.
  • Viscount Ennismore was the first and last Secretary of Burma, as Burma got independence in 1948.

Centralization of Administration

  • The right of appointment to important offices in India was vested either in the crown or in the Secretary Of State of India-in-Council.
  • This act abolished the Dual Government introduced by the Pitt’s India act.
  • The administration of the country was now highly centralized.
  • All civil, military and executive powers vested in the Governor in council, who was now the Viceroy of India.
  • The Governor General was now responsible to Secretary of State. There was a provision of creation of an Indian Civil Service under the control of the Secretary of State.
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