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Monday, May 12, 2008




Period of Tenure


Charles Canning

1 November 185821 March 1862

1858 reorganization of British Indian Army (contemporaneously and hereafter Indian Army)
Construction begins (1860): University of Bombay, University of Madras, and University of Calcutta
Indian Penal Code passed into law in 1860.
Indian Councils Act 1861
Establishment of Archaeological Survey of India in 1861
James Wilson, financial member of Council of India reorganizes customs, imposes income tax, creates paper currency.
Indian Police Act of 1861, creation of Indian Police Service.

Lord Elgin

21 March 186220 November 1863

Dies prematurely in Dharamsala

Sir John Lawrence

12 January 186412 January 1869

Anglo-Bhutan Duar War (18641865)
Orissa famine of 1866
Bundelkhand and Upper Hindustan famine of 1868–1869
Creation of Department of Irrigation.
Creation of Imperial Forestry Service in 1867 (now Indian Forest Service).

Lord Mayo

12 January 18698 February 1872

Creation of Department of Agriculture (now Ministry of Agriculture)
Major extension of railways, roads, and canals
Indian Councils Act of 1870
Creation of Andaman and Nicobar Islands as a Chief Commissionership (1872).
Assassination of Lord Mayo in the Andamans.

Rest of them

Lord Northbrook

3 May 187212 April 1876

Famine in Lower Bengal prevented by importation of rice from Burma.
Gaikwad of Baroda dethroned for misgovernment; dominions continued to a child ruler.
Indian Councils Act of 1874
Visit of the Prince of Wales, future Edward VII in 1875–76.

Lord Lytton

12 April 18768 June 1880

Baluchistan established as a Chief Commissionership
Queen Victoria (in absentia) proclaimed Empress of India at Delhi Durbar of 1877.
Famine of 1877-78: 5 to 5.5 million dead, despite preventive measures at expense of Rs. 8 crore.
Creation of Famine Commission under Sir Richard Strachey.
Indian Forest Act of 1878
Second Anglo-Afghan War.

Lord Ripon

8 June 188013 December 1884

End of Second Anglo-Afghan War.
Repeal of Vernacular Press Act of 1878. Compromise on the Ilbert Bill.
Local Government Acts extend self-government from towns to country.
University of Punjab established in Lahore in 1882
Famine Code promulgated in 1883 by the Government of India.
Creation of the Education Commission. Creation of indigenous schools, especially for Muslims.
Repeal of import duties on cotton and of most tariffs. Railway extension.

Lord Dufferin

13 December 188410 December 1888

Passage of Bengal Tenancy Bill
Third Anglo-Burmese War.
Joint Anglo-Russian Boundary Commission appointed for the Afghan frontier. Russian attack on Afghans at Panjdeh (1885). The Great Game in full play.
Report of Public Services Commission of 1886-87, creation of Imperial Civil Service (later Indian Civil Service, and today Indian Administrative Service)
University of Allahabad established in 1887
Queen Victoria's Jubilee, 1887.

Lord Lansdowne

10 December 188811 October 1894

Strengthening of NW Frontier defense. Creation of Imperial Service Troops consisting of regiments contributed by the princely states.
Gilgit Agency leased in 1899
British Parliament passes Indian Councils Act of 1892 opening the Imperial Legislative Council to Indians.
Revolution in princely state of Manipur and subsequent reinstatement of ruler.
High point of the Great Game. Establishment of the Durand Line between British India and Afghanistan,
Railways, roads, and irrigation works begun in Burma. Border between Burma and Siam finalized in 1893.
Fall of the Rupee, resulting from the steady depreciation of silver currency worldwide (1873-93).
Indian Prisons Act of 1894

Lord Elgin

11 October 18946 January 1899

Reorganization of Indian Army (from Presidency System to the four Commands).
Pamir agreement Russia, 1895
The Chitral Campaign (1895), the Tirah Campaign (1896-97)
Famine of 1896-97 starting in British Bundelkhand.
Bubonic plague in Bombay (1896), Bubonic plague in Calcutta (1898); riots in wake of plague prevention measures.
Establishment of Provincial Legislative Councils in Burma and Punjab; the former a new Lieutenant Governorship.

Lord Curzon

6 January 189918 November 1905

Creation of the North West Frontier Province under a Chief Commissioner (1901).
Famine of 1899-1900, the worst yet on record.
Return of the bubonic plague, 1 million deaths
Financial Reform Act of 1899; Gold Reserve Fund created for India.
Punjab Land Alienation Act
Inauguration of Department (now Ministry) of Commerce and Industry.
Death of Queen Victoria (1901); dedication of the Victoria Memorial Hall, Calcutta as a national gallery of Indian antiquities, art, and history.
Coronation Durbar in Delhi (1903); Edward VII (in absentia) proclaimed Emperor of India.
Francis Younghusband's British expedition to Tibet (1903-04)
Reorganization of Indian Universities Act (1904).
Systemization of preservation and restoration of ancient monuments by Archaeological Survey of India with Indian Ancient Monument Preservation Act.
Inauguration of agricultural banking with Cooperative Credit Societies Act of 1904
Partition of Bengal (1905); new province of East Bengal and Assam under a Lieutenant-Governor.

Lord Minto

18 November 190523 November 1910

Creation of the Railway Board
Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907
Government of India Act of 1909 (also Minto-Morley Reforms)
Appointment of Indian Factories Commission in 1909.
Establishment of Department of Education in 1910 (now Ministry of Education)

Lord Hardinge

23 November 19104 April 1916

Visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911: commemoration as Emperor and Empress of India at last Delhi Durbar
King George V announces creation of new city of New Delhi to replace Calcutta as capital of India.
Indian High Courts Act of 1911
Indian Factories Act of 1911
Construction of New Delhi, 1912-1929
World War I, Indian Army in: Western Front, Belgium, 1914; German East Africa (Battle of Tanga, 1914); Mesopotamian Campaign (Battle of Ctesiphon, 1915; Siege of Kut, 1915-16); Battle of Galliopoli, 1915-16
Passage of Defence of India Act 1915

Lord Chelmsford

4 April 19162 April 1921

Indian Army in: Mesopotamian Campaign (Fall of Baghdad, 1917); Sinai and Palestine Campaign (Battle of Megiddo, 1918)
Passage of Rowlatt Act, 1919
Government of India Act of 1919 (also Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms)
University of Rangoon established in 1920.

Lord Reading

2 April 19213 April 1926

University of Delhi established in 1922.
Indian Workers Compensation Act of 1923

Lord Irwin

3 April 192618 April 1931

Indian Trade Unions Act of 1926, Indian Forest Act, 1927
Appointment of Royal Commission of Indian Labour, 1929
Indian Constitutional Round Table Conferences, London, 1930-32, Gandhi-Irwin Pact, 1931.

Lord Willingdon

18 April 193118 April 1936

New Delhi inaugurated as capital of India, 1931.
Indian Workmen's Compensation Act of 1933
Indian Factories Act of 1934
Royal Indian Air Force created in 1932.
Indian Military Academy established in 1932.
Government of India Act of 1935
Creation of Reserve Bank of India

Lord Linlithgow

18 April 19361 October 1943

Indian Payment of Wages Act of 1936
Burma administered independently after 1937 with creation of new cabinet position Secretary of State for India and Burma
Indian Provincial Elections of 1937
Cripps' mission to India, 1942.
Indian Army in Middle East Theatre of World War II (East African campaign, 1940, Anglo-Iraqi War, 1941, Syria-Lebanon campaign, 1941, Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran, 1941

Indian Army in North African campaign (Operation Compass, Operation Crusader, First Battle of El Alamein, Second Battle of El Alamein)
Indian Army in Battle of Hong Kong, Battle of Malaya, Battle of Singapore
Burma Campaign of World War II begins in 1942.

Lord Wavell

1 October 194321 February 1947

Indian Army becomes, at 2.5 million men, the largest all-volunteer force in history.
World War II: Burma Campaign, 1943-45 (Battle of Kohima, Battle of Imphal)
Bengal famine of 1943
Indian Army in Italian campaign (Battle of Monte Cassino)
British Labour Party wins UK General Election of 1945 with Clement Atlee as prime minister.
1946 Cabinet Mission to India
Indian Elections of 1946.

Lord Mountbatten

21 February 194715 August 1947

Indian Independence Act 1947 passed by the British parliament in June 1947.
Radcliffe Award, August 1947
Partition of India
India Office changed to Burma Office, and Secretary of State for India and Burma to Secretary of State for Burma.

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