Start of Carnatic Wars

The Rise of British Empire in Indian- Aurangzeb died in 1707 CE. Within thirty years after his death the power of the Great Moguls had died out but the name and prestige remained.

The successors of Aurangzeb shut themselves up in palaces with wives and concubines, whilst Ministers of State and Viceroys of the provinces exercise the all real power.

In 1738-39, the news that Nadir Shah had invaded India with a large Persian army from the north-west startled the British at the three Presidencies.

He had plundered the city and palaces of Delhi and carried away the spoils of Northern India.

In 1745 news reached India that war had been declared between Great Britain and France.

This alarmed the British traders at Madras, as the French had established a flourishing town and settlement at Pondicherry about a hundred miles to the south of Madras.

A collision might be expected at any moment between the two settlements.

Dupleix, the Governor of Pondicherry, a Frenchman of large capacity and restless ambition, who hated the British with all the ardour of the typical Frenchman of the eighteenth century.

The same year a British fleet appeared off the coast of Coromandel and threatened Pondicherry.

Soon, the Nawab of the Carnatic declared that he would have no wars between European nations within his territories, and the British fleet sailed away.

Madras captured, 1746

In 1746, a French fleet appeared off Madras, but the Nawab declined to interfere. Dupleix turned Nawab towards French side.

The French bombarded Fort St. George; the native inhabitants fled from Madras.

The British inhabitants were carried in triumph to Pondicherry as prisoners of war.

French defeat the Mogul army

The Nawab of the Carnatic affected to be very angry at this bombardment of Madras.

He demanded that the settlement should be transferred to his authority, and sent an army of 10,000 Moguls to take possession of the town and fortress.

A battalion of 800 Frenchmen utterly routed the army of 10,000 Moguls.

From that day it was felt throughout Southern India that no Mogul army could stand against the rapid firing of disciplined Europeans.

European Line Infantry defeated Moghul Army
European Line Infantry defeated Moghul Army

In 1748, the Great Britain and France concluded the European war for a while, and restored Madras to the British.

Brilliant success of Dupleix

Later on, the death of the Nizam of the Deccan threw the whole country into confusion.

Rival kinsmen began to fight for the throne of the province without any reference to the Great Mogul.

Dupleix plunged at once into the fray. He saw that a French force might turn the scale of victory.

He moved a French army, under the command of Bussy, to help a victorious candidate as occasion served, without the slightest regard to the rightness or wrongness of his claim.

In 1751 he had realized his dream of ambition. He had placed a Nizam on the throne at Hyderabad.

New Nizam rewarded him with the cession of a territory stretching 600 miles along the coast, for the maintenance of a French standing army.

To crown all, he induced the Nizam to appoint him Nawab of the Carnatic.

In spite of Dupleix being a Frenchman and a Catholic, Nizam made the appointment of Dupleix under the seal of the Great Mogul.

Meanwhile, the British had supported the claim of a Mogul prince named Mohammed Ali to the throne of the Carnatic.

Nizam now called upon English to acknowledge the superior authority of their bitter enemy Dupleix.

Triumph of Robert Clive

British rule in Southern India was at its last gasp. If Dupleix could only have got hold of Mohammed Ali, he might have been master of the Carnatic.

He had fled away to seek the help of the Hindu Rajas of the south.

Soon he fled to the city of Trichy, 180 miles to the south of Arcot which french closely besieged.

At this crisis Robert Clive saved the East India Company and led to the Rise of British Empire in Indian. Mohammed Ali was very nearly surrendering.

He left Madras with a small force, and after a march of seventy miles into the interior, threw himself into the city of Arcot, the capital of the Carnatic.

The Rise of British Empire in Indian

The native garrison fled at his approach, and the inhabitants, numbering 100,000, offered no resistance.

The French were aghast at hearing that the British control the capital of the Carnatic.

They dispatched a large force from Trichy, but failed to recover Arcot. In the end, they raised the siege of Trichy.

Clive delivered Mohammed Ali to the British in possession of the Carnatic, to the exclusion of Dupleix and ruin of his ambitious schemes.

End of War, 1756

By 1756, British and French wanted peace, and agreed to make Dupleix their scapegoat.

They threw the whole blame of the war upon the unfortunate Frenchman, who returned to France and died in poverty.

In 1755, they patched up  a treaty at Pondicherry, but never executed.

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