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100 years ago: British rule in India

25 August 2010

August 26th, 1910.

MUCH has been heard of late of the spirit of unrest in India, and at last a serious attempt is being made by the Indian Government to discover the causes that underlie this unrest, and the best means of removing them. An official circular, recently issued, directs that proper in­struction shall be given in Indian schools in lieu of the present “faulty and even poisoned instruction given to lads as an education”. The instruc­tion they now receive is said to create misapprehension concerning the character and results of British rule. In the Oriental Review, a Parsee graduate of Bombay Univer­sity, Mr A. S. Wadia, amplifies this state­ment. The history text-books in use in Indian schools dwell, he says, on the dubious means by which the foundations of British Empire in India were laid, making but passing reference to the glor­ious episodes which the other side of the shield exhibits. “What histor­ian”, he asks, “even cursorily mentions how Cap­tain Dixon re­claimed a savage race of marauders in Mairwar, how Lieu­tenant Out­ram civilized the Bheels in Khander, how Augustus Cleve­land human­ized the savage hill people of Ban­galpore, or how Cap­tain Macpher­son suppressed the barbarous rite of human sacrifice among the Khonds of Orissa?” We are glad to see that the article containing this extract is about to be published in pamphlet form.

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