Battle of Buxar 1764 - UPSC Mains History

With the advent of Europeans in India, the British East India Company gradually conquered Indian territories. Battle of Buxar is one such confrontation between the British army and the Indian counterparts which paved the way for British to rule over India for the next 200 years. The Battle of Buxar took place in 1764 and is an important chapter in Indian Modern History for IAS Exam.

This article will talk about the Battle of Buxar in detail to help UPSC aspirants understand it for the mains examination. You can also download the Battle of Buxar notes PDF from the link provided.

Battle of Buxar – UPSC History Notes:-  Download PDF Here

What is Battle of Buxar?

It is a battle that was fought between English Forces, and a joint army of the Nawab of Oudh Shah Alam II, Nawab of Bengal, Mir Kasim, and Mughal Emperor. The battle was the result of misuse of Dastak, Farman and also the trade colonialist desire of English.

Battle of Buxar Causes

Before the battle of Buxar, one more battle was fought. That was Battle of Plassey, that timely gave British the predominance over the administration of the Bengal. As a result of the Battle of Plassey, Siraj-Ud-Daulah was dethroned as the Nawab of Bengal and was replaced by Mir Jafar (Commander of Siraj’s Army.) After Mir Jafar became the new Bengal nawab, the British took him as their puppet but Mir Jafar got involved with Dutch.  Mir Qasim (son-in-law of Mir Jafar) was supported by the British to become the new Nawab and under the pressure of the Company, Mir Jafar decided to resign in favour of Mir Kasim. A pension of Rs 1,500 per annum was fixed for Mir Jafar.

A few reasons which were the key to the Battle of Buxar are given below:

  • Mir Qasim wanted to be independent and shifted his capital to Munger Fort from Calcutta.
  • He also hired foreign experts to train his army.
  • He treated Indian merchants and English as same.
  • Misuse of Dastak, Farman and expansion of trade by English were disliked by Mir Qasim.
  • These factors fuelled the English decided to overthrow him and war broke out between Mir Kasim and the Company in 1763.

Who Fought the Battle of Buxar?

The table below will inform the IAS aspirants to know the participants of the battle of Buxar and their significance on the battle:

Participants of Battle of Buxar Role in the Battle of Buxar
Mir Qasim – (Administering Bengal in place of Mir Jafar – Nawab of Bengal) He disliked misuse of dastak, farmans by the English, hence tried to conspire against English forming an alliance with Awadh Nawab and Mughal Emperor
Shuja-Ud-Daulah – Nawab of Awadh (Oudh) Was a part of a confederacy with Mir Qasim and Shah Alam-II
Shah Alam II – Mughal Emperor He wanted to overthrow English from Bengal
Hector Munro – British Army Major He led the battle from the English side
Robert Clive Singed the treaties with Shuja-Ud-Daulah and Shah Alam-II after winning the battle

The Course of Battle of Buxar

When the battle broke out in 1763, English gained successive victories at Katwah, Murshidabad, Giria, Sooty and Munger. Mir Kasim fled to Awadh (or Oudh) and formed a confederacy with the Shuja-Ud-Daulah (Nawab of Awadh) and Shah Alam II (Mughal Emperor). Mir Qasim wanted to recover Bengal from the English. Read the course of battle in the points below:

  • Mir Qasim fled to Oudh
  • He planned a confederacy with Shuja-Ud-Daula and Shah Alam II in a final bid to overthrow the English from Bengal
  • Mir Qasim’s soldiers met the English army troops directed by Major Munro in 1764.
  • Joined armies of Mir Qasim were defeated by the British.
  • Mir Qasim absconded from the battle and the other two surrendered to the English army.
  • The battle of Buxar ended with the Treaty of Allahabad in 1765.

Result of Battle of Buxar

  • Mir Qasim, Shuja-Ud-Daula and Shah Alam-II lost the battle on October 22, 1764.
  • Major Hector Munro won a decisive battle and Robert Clive had a major role in that.
  • English became a great power in northern India.
  • Mir Jafar (Nawab of Bengal) handed over districts of Midnapore, Burdwan and Chittagong to the English for the maintenance of their army.
  • The English were also permitted duty-free trade in Bengal, except for a duty of two per cent on salt.
  • After the death of Mir Jafar, his minor son, Najimud-Daula, was appointed nawab, but the real power of administration lay in the hands of the naib-subahdar, who could be appointed or dismissed by the English.
  • Robert Clive was selected as the first Governor-General of Bengal.
  • He made political settlements with Emperor Shah Alam II and Shuja-Ud-Daula of Awadh in the Treaty of Allahabad.

What is the Treaty of Allahabad (1765)?

Two important treaties were concluded in Allahabad between Robert Clive, Shuja-Ud-Daulah & Shah Aam-II. The key-points of the treaty of Allahabad are given below:

Treaty of Allahabad between Robert Clive & Shuja-Ud-Daulah:

  • Shuja had to surrender Allahabad and Kara to Shah Alam II
  • He was made to pay Rs 50 lakh to the Company as war indemnity; and
  • He was made to give Balwant Singh (Zamindar of Banaras) full possession of his estate.

Treaty of Allahabad between Robert Clive & Shah Alam-II:

  • Shah Alam was commanded to reside at Allahabad which was ceded to him by Shuja-Ud-Daulah under the Company’s protection
  • The emperor had to issue a Farman granting the Diwani of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa to the East India Company in lieu of an annual payment of Rs 26 lakh;
  • Shah Alam had to abide by a provision of Rs 53 lakh to the Company in return for the Nizamat functions (military defence, police, and administration of justice) of the said provinces.

Key-Facts about Battle of Buxar for UPSC Mains

There are a few facts a UPSC 2020 aspirant should know to get a hold of questions that may be asked in mains:

  1. After the Battle of Buxar, English did not annex Awadh even after Shuja-Ud-Daulah was defeated because it would have placed the Company under an obligation to protect an extensive land frontier from the Afghan and the Maratha invasions.
  2. Shuja-Ud-Daulah became a firm friend of British and made Awadh a buffer state between English and foreign invasions.
  3. The treaty of Allahabad with Mughal Emperor Shah Alam-II made emperor a useful ‘rubber stamp’ of the Company. Besides, the emperor’s Farman legalised the political gains of the Company in Bengal.

Battle of Buxar – UPSC History Notes:-  Download PDF Here

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