Rajit K. Mazumder
Title The Indian Army and the Making of Punjab
Book Condition New
Publisher New Delhi, India Orient BlackSwan/Permanent Black 2011
8178243156 / 9788178243153
Seller ID 101965
A handful of Englishmen controlled the vast British Indian empire for nearly two hundred years. Throughout this period, the colonials who ran the empire (viceroys, bureaucrats, military men, police officers) constituted a minuscule minority of the Indian population. That a few thousand British men dominated so many million Indians for so long via ‘native’ collaborators (feudal princes, educated babus, peasant recruits) has long been known. This book looks closely at the Indian army in order to show precisely how collaboration worked to sustain a national empire and a local economy. The British Indian army was the mightiest pillar of the empire. It protected the state from internal danger and external aggression, and it helped fulfill global imperial objectives. The bulk of this British Indian army was made up of Indian regiments, and, after 1857, the largest recruitment into this army was from Punjab. Rajit Mazumder investigates the social, economic and political consequences of the creation and existence of this native army. He argues that Punjab’s military significance resulted in a uniquely interdependent relationship between the colonial state and dominant elements within Punjab. Two-fifths of the Indian army comprised Punjabi peasant recruits. The pay and pensions of these soldiers enabled the recruited classes to live better than their non-recruited counterparts. Punjab was favoured with other benefits: the creation of a vast transport and communications network to protect the north-west frontier grew into the infrastructure on which Punjab’s massive agricultural expansion took place.Printed Pages: 325.
The Indian Army and the Making of Punjab Rajit K. Mazumder