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British Land Revenue System in India

The question of determining the land revenue system in Bengal arose under the company when the British company received the Bengal Diwali. Initially, Lord Clive continued to recover land revenue through the Indian authorities and retained the traditional structure in the land revenue system. The company used to insist on the maximum realization of land revenue from the beginning. Its purpose behind this was to invest a large amount of money received from the collection of land revenue in the purchase of merchandise. Apart from this, the aim of the company was to meet military and other expenses also.

Hence, soon after receiving the Diwali of Bengal, the company increased the amount of land revenue in Bengal. Nevertheless, the company recovers the land revenue only through the Indian authorities. Recovers land revenue. Recovery of land revenue was done by the British authorities. However, the consequence of this system was that such a dual system gave rise to a kind of corruption and a lot of exploitation of farmers started. The terrible famine of 1769 – 70 AD is seen as the result of this revenue policy of the British.

In 1793 AD, Cornwallis implemented a permanent settlement for land revenue management. Two important aspects of land revenue reforms brought out by it came to light:

Implement the concept of private property in the land, and
Permanent settlement

In the method of Lord Cornwallis, the intermediaries and middlemen were declared the masters of the land. On the other hand, the independent peasants were converted into subordinate raiyats and the community property was kept under private ownership of the zamindars. The land was made salable. Landlords had to pay the land revenue to the government on a fixed date. Based on the Bengal Regulation of 1793 AD, ‘Sunset Law’ was brought in 1794 AD, according to which if the zamindar does not deposit the amount of land revenue with the District Collector till sunset on a certain date, then his entire Zamindari used to be auctioned. After this, on the basis of the regulation of 1799 and 1812 AD, the peasants were completely under the control of the landlords, meaning that if on a certain date the peasants did not pay the land revenue to the zamindar, then the zamindar could keep their running and Can acquire both types of immovable property. As a result, the amount of land revenue was fixed as the maximum and for this, the year 1790 – 91 AD was made the base year. In conclusion, between 1765 – 93 the company doubled the rate of land revenue in Bengal.



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