What is the reason for Second Anglo Maratha War?
The Second Anglo-Maratha War began in similar circumstances as the first. After Peshwa Madhavrao Narayan committed suicide in 1795, Bajirao II, Raghunathrao’s worthless son, ascended to the throne. Nana Phadnavis, a sworn enemy of Bajirao II, was appointed chief minister. The English took advantage of the Marathas’ internal strife to engage in Maratha affairs. The British gained an additional edge when Nana Phadnavis died in 1800.
Treaty of Second Anglo Maratha War
The Peshwa mercilessly assassinated Jaswantrao Holkar’s brother, Vithuji, on April 1, 1801. The united armies of Sindhia and Bajirao II were pitted against a furious Jaswant. The unrest persisted, and on October 25, 1802, Jaswant decisively beat the armies of the Peshwa and Sindhia at Hadaspar near Poona, putting Vinayakrao, son of Amritrao, in charge of the Peshwa. Bajirao II escaped to Bassein, where he signed a treaty with the English on December 31, 1802.
The Bassein Treaty (1802) The Peshwa agreed to the following as part of the treaty:
(I) to receive from the Company a contingent of native soldiers (no fewer than 6,000 troops), with the standard percentage of field artillery and European artillery men attached, to be stationed permanently in his domains;
(ii) to relinquish to the Company territory worth Rs 26 lakh in revenue;
(iii) to give up Surat as a city;
(iv) to relinquish all chauth claims on the Nizam’s domains;
(v) to submit all disputes between him and the Nizam or the Gaekwad to the Company’s arbitration;
(vi) not to recruit Europeans from any country at odds with the English; and
(vii) to allow the English to regulate his dealings with other countries.
Vassalage is a term used to describe a situation in which a person is reduced Sindhia and Bhonsle attempted to save Maratha independence when the Peshwa accepted the subsidiary alliance. However, Arthur Wellesley’s well-prepared and organized English army defeated the united armies of Sindhia and Bhonsle, forcing them to sign separate subsidiary treaties with the English. Yashwantrao Holkar attempted to organize a coalition of Indian monarchs to oppose the English in 1804. His attempt, however, was in vain. The Marathas were beaten, forced to vassalage by the British, and isolated from each other. I Bhonsle’s defeat (December 17, 1803, Devgaon Treaty);
(ii) Sindhia’s defeat (December 30, 1803, Surajianjangaon Treaty); and
(iii) Holkar’s defeat (1806, Rajpurghat Treaty)].
The Treaty of Bassein’s Importance Despite the fact that the pact was signed by a Peshwa with no political power, the English gained enormously. The installation of regular English troops in Maratha territory was strategically advantageous. In Mysore, Hyderabad, and Lucknow, the Company already had troops. The addition of Poona to the list meant that the Company’s forces were now more evenly distributed and could be quickly dispatched to any location in the event of an emergency. Despite the fact that the Treaty of Bassein did not throw India up to the Company on a silver platter, it was a significant step in the right direction; the Company was now well positioned to expand its spheres of influence. The claim that the pact “handed the English the key to India” may be overdone in the circumstances, but it is comprehensible.