Interesting Facts About the Battle of Plassey

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Battle of Plassey

The infamous Battle of Plassey of 1757 was a watershed moment in Indian history and led to the establishment of British rule in India. The battle took place between Robert Clive, who headed the East India Company, and Siraj-Ud-Daulah, the Nawab of Bengal who had seized control of Calcutta with help of French troops. The battle between the two forces was a skirmish rather than a war, as the British army outranked Siraj’s army in terms of numbers, strategy, and experience. Keep reading to find out all the details about the Battle of Plassey!

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What led to the Battle of Plassey?

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Siraj-Ud Daulah was the last independent Nawab of Bengal, he took the throne in 1755 by succeeding his maternal grandfather, Alivardi Khan. Two years into his reign, Nawab of Bengal decided to take back the control of Calcutta from the British forces with the help of the French East India Company. The strained relationship between Siraj-Ud Daulah and the British was a result of misuse of trade privileges and the fact that the latter openly supported the Nawab’s enemies and conspirators. This support and failure to comply with the trade rules angered Siraj-Ud-Daulah, which ultimately led to the Battle of Plassey in 1757. The Battle of Plassey was fought at Palashi, on the banks of the Bhagirathi river near Calcutta on June 23, 1757.

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Causes of Battle of Plassey

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The most significant reasons that caused the Battle of Plassey were

  • Non payment of taxes by the East Indian Company.
  • Non performance of duties by East Indian Company.
  • Misuse of the trade privileges granted to East Indian Company by the Nawab of Bengal.
  • Fortification of Calcutta and Fort William by the East Indian Company without the permission of the Nawab of Bengal.
  • Extension of an asylum to Krishna Das, Nawab’s enemy, who had misappropriated government funds and fed the territory.
  • The infamous incident is popularly known as Black Hole of Calcutta. Many East India Company officials were killed in this incident as 100 were kept in one cell that was meant for 6 people. 

Angered by the increased fortification of Fort William and continuous betrayals of the British, the Nawab of Bengal captured the Calcutta Fort and imprisoned East India Company officials in a dungeon at Fort William. Following this incident, the East India Company sent Robert Clive from Madras to seize back British control of Calcutta and establish a British-friendly government in the province. Robert Clive meticulously planned an attack and bribed Mir Jafar, the commander in chief of Nawab of Bengal by promising to make him the next Nawab of Bengal. 

The Nawab lost the battle because of the treachery of Mir Jafar and lack of planning to protect their weapons in case of a downpour that happened on the day of the battle. Siraj-Ud-Daulah’s army of 50,000 soldiers, 40 cannons, and 10 war elephants was defeated in the battle by 3,000 soldiers of the East India Company headed by Robert Clive. After his defeat, Siraj-Ud-Daulah fled from the battle and was later killed by his own men. The Nawab’s army lost 500 men, most of them were key officials and severe casualties were also reported in the battle. 

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What were the Effects of the Battle of Plassey?

The effects of the Battle of Plassey of 1757 on the Indian continent are as follows:

Political Effects Economic Effects
Crowning of Mr. Jafar as the Nawab of Bengal India’s economy was severely affected 
British became the paramount power in Bengal Several rules and regulations were imposed by the British in Bengal
End of French forces The British ordered tax collection from the Bengal inhabitants. 
Mir Jafar persuaded the Dutch to attach the British as he was unhappy with his position – Battle of Chinsura was fought
After the Battle of Chinsura, Mir Qasim became the Nawab of Bengal

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Results and Outcomes of the Battle 

  • The direct result of the Battle of Plassey of the political growth of the East India Company and the political establishment of the British Empire in the state of Bengal. 
  • The Battle of Plassey is considered the start of British rule in India. 
  • After the defeat of the Siraj-Ud-Daulah, Mir Jafar was instated as the nawab of Bengal by Robert Clive.
  • The East India Company through Mir Jafar acquired Bengal’s trade and commercial control.
  • Major General Robert Clive was honoured by the British government for his victory in the Battle and conferred the title of a Lord in the year 1760 after his return to England.

Important Historical Figures in the Battle of Plassey

Let’s have a look at the names that have been associated with this historic war –

  1. Siraj-Ud-Daulah, the Nawab of Bengal who led the Battle of Plassey.
  2. Robert Clive, the EIC official who headed the British forces.
  3. Mir Jafar , the Commander-in-Chief who betrayed the Nawab of Bengal.
  4. Mir Qasim, the Nawab of Bengal after dethroning Mir Jafar.
  5. Jagath Seth, the Influential banker who was Involved in the conspiracy of imprisonment and ultimate killing of Nawab Siraj-Ud-Daulah
  6. Omi Chand, the Merchant of Bengal who was also involved in the conspiracy against Nawab. He was associated with the treaty negotiated by Robert Clive before the Battle of Plassey in 1757

A Short Note on Battle of Plassey

The historic Battle of Plassey was fought in the year 1757 between the East India Company led by Major General Robert Clive and Siraj-Ud-Daulah, the Nawab of Bengal. The strained relationship between Siraj-Ud Daulah and the British was the main cause of the battle. Britishers’ misuse of trade privileges and open support for Nawab’s enemies and conspirators angered Siraj-Ud-Daulah, who ultimately challenged the British by gaining control of Calcutta Fort and imprisoning the British officials. The battle was fought at Palashi, on the banks of the Bhagirathi river near Calcutta on June 23, 1757, and resulted in the defeat of the Bengal Nawab. 

Best Books on the Battle of Plassey

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Battle of Plassey PPT

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Important Questions

Here are some important questions and answers on the Battle of Plassey:

What led to the Battle of Plassey?

The most significant reasons that caused the Battle of Plassey were –
Non-payment of taxes by the East Indian Company.
Non-performance of duties by East Indian Company.
Misuse of the trade privileges granted to East Indian Company by the Nawab of Bengal.
Fortification of Calcutta and Fort William by the East Indian Company without the permission of the Nawab of Bengal.
Extension of asylum to Krishna Das, Nawab’s enemy, who had misappropriated government funds and fed the territory.
The infamous incident is popularly known as the Black Hole of Calcutta. Many East India Company officials were killed in this incident as 100 were kept in one cell that was meant for 6 people. 

Who led the Battle of Plassey?

The Battle of Plassey was fought between Siraj-Ud-Daulah, Bengal Nawab and East India Company forces headed by Robert Clive.

In the course of history, when did the Battle of Plassey take place?

The Battle of Plassey occurred on 23rd June 1757.

Why is the Battle of Plassey considered to be historically famous?

The Battle of Plassey is said to be historically famous as it is the battle that led to the establishment of British Rule in India. 

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This was all about the Battle of Plassey and the interesting facts about the most crucial event in Indian history. To know more about interesting historical legacies, events and facts, follow Leverage Edu on Facebook, Youtube, and  Instagram!

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