Battle of Buxar: Significance, Causes and Aftermath

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Battle of Buxar

On 22nd October 1764, the infamous Battle of Buxar took place between the British army led by Henry Munro and a combined alliance of Indian rulers from  Bengal, Awadh, and the Mughal Empire. This historic battle paved the way for the British to rule India for the following 183 years. The British East India Company gradually conquered Indian territories as Europeans arrived in India. After the victory in the Battle of Plassey in 1757, the British East India Company had its sights on Bengal. The battle concluded in 1765, with the surrender of the Mughal Emperor and Bengal coming under British rule. Keep reading to know more!

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When was the Battle of Buxar?

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The Battle of Buxar took place on 22nd October 1764 between the English forces and Indian rulers. The English forces battled against a combined army of the Nawab of Oudh, the Nawab of Bengal, and the Mughal Emperor. The war was triggered by the Nawab of Bengal’s misuse of trade privileges, as well as the East India Company’s colonial ambitions.

Background of the Battle of Buxar

Before the battle of Buxar, one more battle was fought. The Battle of Plassey provided the British with a firm foundation in the Bengal region. Siraj-Ud-Daulah was removed as Nawab of Bengal after the Battle of Plassey, and Mir Jafar (Commander of Siraj’s Army) took his place.

The British made Mir Jafar their puppet after he became the new Bengal nawab, but Mir Jafar was involved with the Dutch East India Company. The British supported Mir Qasim (Mir Jafar’s son-in-law) to become the new Nawab, and Mir Jafar quit in favour of Mir Qasim under pressure from the Company. Mir Jafar was given a pension of Rs 1,500 per year.

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What led to the Battle of Buxar?

Battle of Buxar
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  • Mir Qasim desired freedom and established his capital from Calcutta to Munger Fort.
  • He also gained the support of foreign experts to train his army, which included some who were in conflict with the British.
  • He treated Indian merchants and English merchants equally, with no special treatment for the latter.
  • For these factors, the English planned to overthrow him, and in 1763, war broke out between Mir Qasim and the Company.

A Closer Look at the Battle of Buxar

Battle of Buxar’s participants and their significance in the battle:

Participants of the Battle of Buxar The role played in the Battle of Buxar
Mir Qasim  He opposed the English’s misuse of “dastak” and “farmans”, consequently he plotted against them by making an alliance with the Nawab of Awadh and Mughal Emperor Shah Alam II.
Shuja-Ud-Daulah (Nawab of Awadh) With Mir Qasim and Shah Alam-II, he formed a confederacy.
Shah Alam II (Mughal Emperor) He desired to remove the English from Bengal.
Hector Munro (British Army Major) From the English side, he led the battle.
Robert Clive After winning the fight, he signed treaties with Shuja-Ud-Daulah and Shah Alam-II.

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Events of the Battle of Buxar

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When the battle broke out in 1763, the English won at Katwa, Murshidabad, Giria, Sooty, and Munger in that series. Mir Kasim fled to Awadh (or Oudh) and formed an alliance with the Nawab of Awadh, Shuja-Ud-Daulah, and Shah Alam II (Mughal Emperor). Mir Qasim wanted to recapture Bengal from the British. Mir Qasim wanted to recapture Bengal from the British. 

Immediate Aftermath of the Battle of 1764-65:

  • Mir Qasim took refuge in Oudh.
  • In a final attempt to remove the English from Bengal, he planned a confederacy with Shuja-Ud-Daula and Shah Alam II.
  • In 1764, Mir Qasim’s soldiers battled with Major Munro’s English army.
  • Mir Qasim’s combined army was defeated by the British.
  • Mir Qasim fled the battlefield, while the other two surrendered to the English army.
  • The Treaty of Allahabad, signed in 1765, brought an end to the Battle of Buxar.

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Aftermath of the Battle of Buxar

  • On October 22, 1764, Mir Qasim, Shuja-Ud-Daula, and Shah Alam-II lost the battle.
  • Robert Clive played a key role in Major Hector Munro’s victory in a pivotal battle.
  • In northern India, the English gained a major force.
  • The English were handed the districts of Midnapore, Burdwan, and Chittagong by Mir Jafar (Nawab of Bengal) for the maintenance of their army.
  • Except for a 2% tax on salt, the English were also permitted duty-free trade in Bengal.
  • Mir Jafar’s minor son, Najm Ud-Daula, was declared nawab after his death, but the true power of administration remained with the naib-subahdar, who was appointed or dismissed by the English.

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Treaty of Allahabad (1765)

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In Allahabad, Robert Clive, Shuja-Ud-Daulah, and Shah Aam-II signed two important treaties. The following are the main points of the Allahabad Treaty:

Robert Clive and Shuja-Ud-Daulah signed the Allahabad Treaty:

  • Shuja was forced to surrender Allahabad and Kara to Shah Alam II, and he was obliged to pay the Company Rs 50 lakh in war compensation.
  • He was forced to hand over complete control of his property to Balwant Singh (Zamindar of Banaras).

Robert Clive and Shah Alam-II signed the Treaty of Allahabad:

  • Shah Alam was allowed to live in Allahabad, which Shuja-Ud-Daulah had granted him under the Company’s protection.
  • In exchange for a Rs 26 lakh annual payment, the emperor had to issue a Farman granting the East India Company the Diwani of Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa.

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This was all about the Battle of Buxar, we hope the information provided was helpful. For more study notes for competitive exams and general knowledge, follow Leverage Edu on Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and LinkedIn.

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