The fragrance of Indian spices and the lucrative trade associated with it attracted the East India Company to trade in India. Until December 1600, it was only a private trading corporation. Until that time, Spain and Portugal had a monopoly on this company. The Company eventually became an extremely powerful agent of British imperialism in South Asia and the de facto colonial ruler of large parts of India. Partly due to endemic corruption, the Company was gradually deprived of its commercial monopoly and political control, and its Indian possessions were nationalized by the British Crown in 1858.
The home government in Britain formally dissolved this trading company in 1874 by taking an action. This act is known as the “East India Stock Dividend Redemption Act (1873)”.
1. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the East India Company relied on slave labor and smuggled slaves from West and East Africa, particularly Mozambique and Madagascar, to their holdings in India and Indonesia, as well as to the island of St. delivered. Helena in the Atlantic Ocean. Although its slave traffic was small compared to transatlantic slave-trading enterprises such as the Royal African Company, the East India Company relied significantly on the transfer of slaves with specialized skills and experience to manage their far-flung territories.
2. The East India Company controlled its army, which by 1800 consisted of about 200,000 soldiers, more than twice the membership of the British Army at that time. The Company used its armed force to subjugate the Indian states and princely states with which it initially had trade agreements, to enforce ruinous taxation, to carry out officially sanctioned plunder, and to efficient and to protect their economic exploitation of both unskilled Indian labor. The Company’s forces played an infamous role in the unsuccessful Indian Rebellion of 1857–58 (also known as the Indian Rebellion), in which Indian soldiers among the Company’s employees led an armed rebellion against their British officers, which led to a revolt for India. gained popular support in the form of war. Independence. During more than a year of fighting, both sides committed atrocities, including massacres of civilians, although the Company’s retaliation eventually outweighed the violence of the rebels.
The revolt of 1857 was fueled by the British, but an act passed by the British Crown in 1858 (known as Queen Victoria’s Declaration) brought about the effective abolition of the East India Company in 1858.
3. In the early 19th century, the East India Company illegally sold opium to China to purchase Indian tea and other goods. Chinese opposition to that trade led to the First and Second Opium Wars (1839–42; 1856–60), in which both British forces emerged victoriously.
4. The management of the company was remarkably efficient and economical. During its first 20 years, the East India Company was run from the home of its governor, Sir Thomas Smith, and had a permanent staff of only six. In 1700 it operated in its small London office with 35 permanent employees. In 1785 it controlled a vast empire of millions with a permanent London workforce of 159.
5. After several years of misrule and a great famine (1770) in Bengal, where the Company had established puppet rule in 1757, the Company’s land revenue declined sharply, prompting it to seek an emergency loan of £1 million Was forced to appeal (1772). To avoid bankruptcy. Although the East India Company was granted bail by the British government, its management (Regulating Act of 1773) and later government control over political policy in India (India Act of 1784) led to severe criticism and scrutiny by parliamentary committees.