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Early Resistance to British Rule
The conquest of territories and the expansionist policy of the British East India Company led to a series of rebellions of deposed kings, or their descendants, uprooted zamindars, and palayakarars. Historians describe this as primary resistance. Independent of such revolts were the uprisings of the dispossessed peasants and tribals. The rapid changes introduced by the British in the agrarian relations, land revenue system, and judicial administration, elaborated in the previous lesson, greatly disrupted the agrarian economy, resulting in widespread misery among various sections of the society. Therefore, when the aggrieved erstwhile ruling class raised a standard of revolt, the support of the mass of peasants and artisans was not lacking. In this lesson we discuss the happenings of that time in south India as well as the great rebellion of 1857.
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