Governor Generals from 1773 to 1947

Governor General / Viceroy Period Important Achievements/Contributions/Events
Warren Hastings 1774 – 1785 (1) First Governor General of India,(2) During his tenure Regulating Act, 1773 was introduced which brought the dual government of Bengal to an end.

(3) He was impeached due to mismanagement and personal corruption but was finally acquitted.

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Lord Cornwallis 1786 – 1793

(1) Introduced Permanent Settlement of Bengal (or Zamindari System).

It was an agreement between the East India Company and Bengali landlords to fix revenues to be raised from land.

(2) He led British forces in the Third Anglo-Mysore War to defeat the Mysore ruler Tipu Sultan.

(3) Laid foundation to Indian Civil Services.

(4) Judicial Reforms-In criminal cases, Muslim law was improved and followed. In civil cases, Hindu and Muslim laws were followed according to the religion of the litigants.

Lord Wellesley 1798 – 1805

(1) He introduced the policy of Subsidiary Alliance to keep the Indian rulers under control by keeping British forces in their territory. Hyderabad was the first state to accept Subsidiary Alliance.

(2) Fourth Anglo-Mysore War (1799)-Tippu Shot dead.

(3) The Second Maratha War (1803-1805)-Treaty of Deogaon was signed between Bhonsle and Wellesley.

Lord Minto I 1807 – 1813 Concluded the treaty of Amritsar with Maharaja Ranjit Singh.
LORD HASTINGS 1813 – 1823 (1) War with Gurkhas- Treaty of Sagauli,1816(2) Third Maratha War (1817-1819).
Lord William Bentinck 1828 – 1835 (1) He was made the first Governor General of India (earlier the designation was Governor General of Bengal).(2) He carried out social reforms such as Prohibition of Sati, Indian people were again appointed as subordinate judges, made English the language of higher education, suppress the thugs.

(3) Charter Act,1833- EIC monopoly ended.

Sir Charles Metcaffe 1835 – 1836 He abolished all restrictions on vernacular press (He was also called Liberator of the press).
Lord Auckland 1836 – 1842 First Afghan war.
Lord Dalhousie 1848 – 1856 (1) He opened the first Indian Railway from Bombay to Thane in 1853.(2) He introduced Telegraph lined from Calcutta to Agra in 1853. A new Post Office Act was passed in 1854.

(3) He introduced the infamous ‘Doctrine of Lapse’ and captured Satara (1848), Jaipur and Sambhalpur (1849), Udaipur (1852), Jhansi (1853) and Nagpur (1854).

(4) He made Shimla the summer capital.

(5) Started the Public Works Department

(6) Remarriage of widows was legalised by Widow Remarriage Act, 1856.

Lord Canning 1856 – 1862

(1) He was the Governor General during the mutiny of 1857 (India’s First War of Independence). After war he was made first Viceroy of India.

(2) He withdrew Doctrine of Lapse.

(3) In 1861, Indian Councils Act was passed.

(4) Universities at Calcutta, Bombay and Madras was established in 1857.

Lord Lawrence 1864 – 1869

(1) After second Sikh war, he became member of the Punjab Board of Administration and was responsible for numerous reforms which earned him the sobriquet “the Saviour of the Punjab”.

(2) High Courts were constituted at Calcutta, Bombay and Madras in 1865.

Lord Mayo 1869 – 1872 (1) Census was held in 1871.(2) He was the only Viceroy of India who was killed in office by a convict in the Andaman Island in 1872.
Lord Lytton 1876 – 1880 In 1877, he organised the Delhi Durbar in which Queen Victoria was proclaimed with the title of ‘Kaiser-i-Hind’.
Lord Rippon 1880 – 1884 (1) He repealed the Vernacular Press Act in 1882.(2) Age for entry in Civil Services was again raised to 21 years.

(3) The first Factory Act, 1881, was passed to prohibit child labour.

(4) He passed Local Self Government Act in 1882.

(5) He introduced IIbert Bill in 1883.

He was also known as Father of Local Self Government in India.

Lord Dufferin 1884 – 1894 Indian National Congress,1885 was formed.
Lord Lansdowne 1888 – 1894 (1) Indian Council Act was passed in 1892.(2) Durand Commission was appointed to demarcate the line between British India and Afghanistan.
Lord Curzon 1899 – 1905 (1) Partition of Bengal in 1905.(2) Swadeshi movement launched.
Lord Minto 1905 – 1910 Indian Council Act, 1909 or the Morley-Minto Reforms was passed.
Lord Hardinge 1910 – 1916 (1) King George V of England attended Delhi Durbar in 1911.(2) Capital of India shifted from Calcutta to Delhi in 1911

(3) Home Rule Movement was launched by Annie Besant

(4)Mahatma Gandhi came back to India from South Africa in 1915.

Lord Chelmsford 1916 – 1921 (1) The Government of India Act, 1919 (Montague – Chelmsford reforms) was passed.(2) Rowlatt Act, 1919 was passed.

(3)Jallianwala Bagh Tragedy.

(4) Khilafat Movement.

(5) Non-Cooperation movement.

Lord Reading 1921 – 1926 (1) Rowlatt Act was repealed.(2) Swaraj Party was formed.

(3) Chauri Chaura incident.

Lord Irwin 1926 – 1931 (1) Simon Commission visited India in 1928.(2) Dandi March was launched.

(3) Civil Disobedience Movement was launched in 1930.

(4) Gandhi – Irwin Pact was signed.

(5) First Round Table Conference.

Lord Willingdon 1931 – 1936 (1) Second and Third Round Table Conference in 1931(2) Communal award started by British PM Ramsay Macdonald.

(3) Poona Pact was signed.

Lord Linlithgow 1936 – 1944 (1) Government of India Act, 1935 enforced in the provinces.(2) Cripps Mission visited India in 1942.

(3) Quit India movement.

Lord Wavell 1944 – 1947 (1) Cabinet Mission Plan.(2) Shimla conference between Indian National Congress and Muslim League.
Lord Mountbatten Mar 1947 – Aug 1947 (1) Last Viceroy of British India and first Governor General of free India.(2) Partition of India.

(3) Succeeded by C. Rajagopalachari, the first and the last Indian Governor General of free India.


August 7, 2014

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