The Nawabs of Bengal and Arcot were victims of British conspiracy

 Persons  heading  countries or   nations, as Shakespeare said in Hamlet, are  picked out of ten thousands, hence they  have additional  responsibility toward the people as well as the country and its  well-being  when dealing with key issues related to security and foreign policy. If they fail to take the good advice of people around them and make decision on their own, unmindful of consequences, the result will be disastrous, if their decision goes wrong.

For example in the present political scenario, the on going war between Russia and Ukraine could have been averted had the president of Ukraine - Volodymyr Zelenskyy  taken right decision not to prolong the war. The US and other European countries poked their nose  and are doing good business by supplying  war weapons, etc. Burdened with heavy loan, human loss and  battered country, Ukraine has to spend years for its recovery once the war is over. One man's ego is bleeding the country now. In the war  the beneficiaries are the US and other European countries who have disposed of their old stockpile of war weapons, etc. The president of Ukraine is responsible for the  looming global recession. 

if you read the history of the growth of East India company in India, it followed the same tactics of ''divide and rule'' - instigating trouble between two waring Indian rulers and  supplying them their war weapons like powerful artillery guns, cannons, etc., and prolonging the enmity between the nations.  In this post I  have written briefly how the British took over Bengal region in NE India and the Arcot kingdom (part of Carnatic region) in S. India. 

Undivided early Bengal: 

The undivided  Bengal was ruled by  Nawab Siraj-ud-dualah (1733 – 2 July 1757) and  EIC was operating there a maritime company from their settlement in Calcutta. After some period  they stopped paying the custom duty to the ruler,  openly  violating  the norms of  trade agreement. There were many small illegal maritime traders  secretly operating  under the company's shadow against the wish of the Nawab. The previous ruler Nawab Aliwardi Khan (1740 to 1756). had similar experience and managed it without any major confrontation with  the company. He took politically neutral stance with  European powers in the subcontinent to prevent infighting  in his dominions 

Well settled, the EIC became arrogant and pushed the present Nawab to the edge of exasperation by  carrying  out  fortification of Ft. William without permission or approval from the ruler.  Siraj soon  resented the politico-military presence of the English  company in Bengal.  In particular, he was angered at the company's alleged involvement in the internal affairs of his regime  and instigation of some members of his own court to a conspiracy to oust him besides their illegal trade activates and swelling  arrears of duty fees. They grossly abused the trade privileges granted to them and the Bengal government incurred heavy loss of revenue due to defaulting English company.  . 

Nawab Siraj-ud-daulah, Bengal,

Ft. William, Calcutta 1806.

His directives to the company having been ignored, Nawab Siraj was in rage and  with a big army raided Ft. William in 1756 and took it over. The British captives were  put in a dungeon prison cell by a commander that led to the death of a large number of people due to suffocation and stampede inside.  The British prestige was very much affected by  the siege of Calcutta and the tragedy of Black hole which was hyped up by the media in favor of the British made them to go after the ruler. 

Robert Clive  arrived from Madras with his army and navy troops and finally freed Ft. William. The EIC under Clive  seriously took refuge in vigilantism to teach a lesson or two to the Nawab. Being alienated Siraj  did not have good relationship with people closer to him. Some of his  own relatives were against him, Taking advantage of his weakness and disunity among the royal family members, the British traders decided to topple Siraj and create a suitable situation to control Bengal under a puppet ruler.  After the battle of Plassey in 1757 with the help of dissident Amirs, Robert Clive and William Watts, in collusion with relatives of the ruler, had Siraj murdered.   Within a  few years after the battle of Buxer  on 23 October 1764 the company  took control of Bengal and got the Diwani rights - rights to collect revenue from the vast land that was  yielding  far higher income  than  Britain and other few European countries put together.  It was a sort of Bonanza for the English company which was now running the  Quasi Government with approval from the British Crown.

Robert Clive after fresh victory at Arcot, TN 1751

 Thus, fertile and rich Bengal was given to the English   on a silver platter  by the muddled rulers of Bengal with which, they sustained their revenue, improved their economy and  expanded the  British empire on the  altar of blood bath death of tens of thousands of Indian natives.  With unusually vast income from the Indian subcontinent, that experienced  depredation, poverty and helplessness, Britain emerged as the most powerful imperialistic force in the world with a strong economy.  

Bengal. Capture of Calcutta British were like hornets CartoonStock

The fast growth of the British economy had happened only after the siege of Calcutta by Siraj-ud- Daulah  and  later victories by the company.. The never-ending  disunity among the Indian rulers   inspired the British company to take over the Indian lands one by one.  Their task was made easy by the then rulers' disunity, lack of  cooperation and a host of traitors and whistle-blowers who were ready to betray their motherland.  The Indian rulers  failed to come together and fight against the enemy as one formidable force, instead they were divided and busy squeezing each others throat.,_India

The Nawab of Arcot (now Tamil Nadu), a victim of British conspiracy: 

The Nawab of Arcot whose capital was Arcot (now part of Ranipet district district, Tamil Nadu)  had an alliance with the greedy and grasping British Company to safeguard him and his country from powerful  Tipu Sultan of Mysore and his own rival and relative Chanda  Sahib.  When the Mughal rule started to decline become powerless by the 1740s, the Nawabs in many place became  became independent rulers and continued their reign. 

The Arcot kingdom, a  rich one  was on Subsidiary Alliance with the English meaning they had a military alliance with them.  When  an internal squabble in the family became a serious one  and when Chanda Sahib made threats to the Nawab of Arcot  the English company came to the  rescue of the latter.  The nawab of Arcot Md. Ali Khan Wallajah, a good natured person and effective administrator  was at last saved from humiliating defeat by the company's army led by Robert Clive. Robert Clive and his army at the Arcot fort -August to November 1751 successfully tackled a long siege set by the forces of  Chanda  Sahib backed by the French army. Finally Nawab Wallajah was restored as the ruler of Arcot. Since then  the Nawab  had been  at the mercy of the British company. 

nawab of Arcot Md. Ali Khan Wallajah

Above image : Muhammad Ali Khan Wallajah (1749–1795) became the ruler in 1765. He  was  very much indebted to the British, for restoration of his throne  -1754 and maintenance of his kingdom at crucial time through the subsidiary alliance for which he had to cough up annually  more than  400,000 Pagodas ( £160,000)to the English company.  The cost of maintaining the British army had to be borne by the ruler. This fee was subject to change. Thus the English company controlled the Indian land and became masters of fleecing and cheating. Incidentally,  The Treaty of Paris of 1763  acknowledged him as the Nawab and ally of the King of England......... 

Later Nawab  Md. Wallajah made yet another grave  mistake in 1760 by shifting his  residence from Arcot town  to Madras where  he  had a well-embellished palatial palace built near Ft. St. George in order to be closer to the English Company's army.  

The Arcot kingdom virtually became the protectorate of the English company. This was to avoid  enemies around  the region.  To meet part of the construction cost of the palace, Ali Khan Wallajah  borrowed money from the British financiers, invariably most of them were directors of the English company The cost of construction of the Chepauk palace in Triplicane, Madras (Chennai) was prohibitive. At one stage the Nawab was unable to pay the interest on the loan.  At the same time  was he in a position to pay  annual fees for subsidiary alliance to the company. The ruler was in a loan trap and there was no way to wiggle out of the bad predicament.  The English purposely increased the fees and began to tighten the noose around the neck of the ruler  from the other side.

When once a rich Nawab was  pushed into a financial mess the EIC took over the possession of Chepauk  palace (then official residence of the ruler) in a sham auction and forced the Arcot royal family members  to vacate the palace  The ruling family stayed there up to  1855 and finally moved into a small palace called Amir Mahal, Triplicane, Madras.  

To cool  off the ruler after this disgusting rip off,  they made Queen Victoria bestow the status of titular ruler and the title ''the Prince of Arcot'' which the family still enjoys. One of the  early rulers  gifted  the world famous Arcot diamond pairs as gifts to Queen Charlollttewhen she was on a visit to Arcot in the later part of 1700s. This was done by the magnanimous and distinguished Nawab to earn their continuous good will. Unfortunately, there was no reciprocity; the wily British were ungrateful to his dynasty. 

kollur mined famous Arcot diamond pair.

Above image:  Nawabs of Arcot  Md. Wallajah  who ruled the Carnatic  gifted (1777) the diamonds to Queen Charlotte, wife of King George III and Queen Consort of the United Kingdom. It is said  these included five brilliants, the largest of which was a 38.6-carat oval-shaped stone and was later set in a necklace with the two smallest stones.

.Chepauk palace, Chennai, residence of nawab of Arcot.

Above image The Chepauk Palace, Chennai  built by Muhammad Ali khan Wallajah, eighth Nawab of the Carnatic (from 1749 to 1795) on a land covering 117 acres (within the ramparts of Ft. St. George). The principality of Carnatic was abolished by the company in 1855 as per the Doctrine of Lapse (there was no heir to the kingdom and a relative of the last ruler  Azim Jha was the regent then). The Chepauk Palace was put up  for a sham auction to pay off the Nawab's debts and was eventually purchased by the Madras government under the company. Madras Univ. Senate House  (designed by architect Robert Chisholm) came up on part of a land owned by the Nawab when Lord napier was the gov. of the presidency.. ...
proverbial monkey and the cats,

The story of the growth of the British empire in India  takes me back to the old-school fable of hungry monkey and two fighting cats over  a piece of bread.  The wily British taking undue advantage of disunity among the rulers and their misrule, besides  caste and communal differences prevailing at that time settle down in the subcontinent for about 300 years and without any compunction looted India to the tune of $43 trillion  (as per the latest estimate)They left the country divided and in an emaciated status. As of today no apology or reparation from  either the government or from the royal British family who owns a big chunk of Indian gemstones and jewelry including  famous Koh-i-noor diamond and the largest spinel - Timur Ruby..........