Awadh under the British Residents

Amit Vardhan


Awadh area was always the centre of power from times immemorial. This importance also had its
impact on the policy towards Awadh under the British company also. The political importance
was of Awadh forced the British company to keep a watch on the activities of the Nawab. For this
purpose they placed a British Resident in Awadh, it was however done on the request of the
Nawab. Gradually the position of Resident became an all important post in Awadh and Resident
started to control almost all aspects of the administration. The expenses of the office of Resident
also increased gradually from about 12000 annually to later partial share in the revenue of Awadh
even the Nawab had to surrender few portion of the state to meet the expenses of the office of the
Resident. Further to free the company’s regular troops for service elsewhere in India, the company
also organized the forces at the ruler’s expense. Later the resident even played the role of
appointing the Nawab even overlooking the legal heir for the throne. This weakened the position
of Nawab to a very great extent and the Nawab could not even carry out any changes other then
the direction given by the Resident. The company despite having control over almost all sections
of governance disposed the Nawab on the charges of misgovernance in 1856 ending the rule of
Nawab in Awadh. So the system of placing the Resident started with the purpose if liaisoning
gradually took indirect control over the administration and later took the direct control over the


Wazir, Nawab, Culture, Company, Military, Misgovernance

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