THE CHARTER ACT, 1833
The Charter Act, 1833 was the result of certain changed circumstances both in England and India. Policies of Warren Hastings and Wellesley created expansion of territory; administrative work and it lead to felt necessity of effective strong settlement. The laws in presidency town and Mofussil areas were not uniform also a Enlightened section of Indian society demanded reforms in educational sphere.
On other hand the Parliament reforms were effected in 1830 in England which formed a new House of Commons with the ideals of liberalism, which felt that it was preposterous to leave the political government in the hand of Joint Stock Company. At the same time a move was initiated by Lord. T. B. Macaulay and James Hill in England for the reformation of law of India.
According to H. Cowell Parliament was directed to three leading vices (defect) in the process of Government of India.
1) Nature of Law and Regulation in India.
2) Ill defined authority.
3) The anomalous and conflicting Judicature.
This all circumstances, defects and conflicts lead to pass the Charter Act, 1833.
Main Provision of Charter Act, 1833
1) The company was allowed to continued territorial possession for period of 20 years i.e. from 1833 to 1853. The company was held in trust to the Crown.
2) Monopoly of East India Company to tread with India was brought to an end. The Company was required to close commercial business and allowed, political powers and administration.
3) All powers that had full complete and constantly to control, to replace supersede or prevent all proceeding and Act of Governor-General-in-Council were under the British Parliament.
4) All laws & regulations made in India should transfer to England laid before both the houses these laws could be disallowed by the Court of Directors.
5) The Governor-General-in-Council was empowered to make laws and regulation for all person or Court of British India.
6) The Council members were fixed, a 3 & 4th member known as law member was added to the Council. Law member was not company’s servant and has to act only for legislative purpose.(Lord Macaulay was 1st Law member)
7) A provision was made for the appointment of the law Commission.(Lord Macaulay was 1st President)
8) Provisions were made for the representation of natives & their Educational Development.
9) All restrictions to European immigrants into India were removed.
10) The civil and military power were removed from the Company and its entire control and super tend were vested in Governor-General-in-Council.
11) The Act also provided measures for the abolition of slavery trough out in India.
12) Prior to 1833, laws made were called as regulation here after the laws made to be called as ‘Act’.
With the Reference of Book:
Outlines of Indian Legal & Constitutional History.- Prof. M P JAIN.
The author can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org