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In eighteenth century there was an intricate power struggle between various groups of powers. It was not only a struggle between the colonial power and the Indian states but also there was struggle among the Indian powers themselves to establish political supremacy. Discuss.

Topic:  Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.

2. In eighteenth century there was an intricate power struggle between various groups of powers. It was not only a struggle between the colonial power and the Indian states but also there was struggle among the Indian powers themselves to establish political supremacy. Discuss. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: Chapter 5 – A Brief History of Modern India by Rajiv Ahir (Spectrum Publishers)

Why the question:

The question is part of the static syllabus of General studies paper – 1 and mentioned as part of Mission-2022 Secure timetable.

Key Demand of the question:

Write about the power dynamics of the various regional rulers to establish supremacy among themselves in the backdrop of the advent of British rule in India

Directive word: 

Discuss – This is an all-encompassing directive – you must debate on paper by going through the details of the issues concerned by examining each one of them. You must give reasons for both for and against arguments.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Give an account of major political powers in middle of Eighteenth Century India.

Body:

Draw a political map of India representing major Indian powers including establishments of British EIC.

Write about the major leaders such as Marathas, Nizams, Mysore Kingdom, Punjab, Mughals, Nawabs of Awadh and their motive for an expansionist policy (resources, trade etc), reasons for increasing insecurity of the local rulers against the EIC, and their journey to overthrow the British, the various alliances and counter alliances formed during this power struggle and desire establish political Supremacy. Mention important wars and battles fought thereof.

Also, mention the rising power of British in terms of their arsenal, their meddling with internal politics of the region, clearly overstepping their alleged mandate of trade related functions.

Conclusion:

Comment on the outcome of the power struggle.