Synopses & Reviews
This book presents an examination of the financial relationship between the Indian government, as represented by the India Office, and the City of London during the period of direct British rule. It discusses every aspect of the India Office's activities, including the movement of funds to and from India, the issue of loans and other financial instruments, the management of government investment funds, and the purchase of silver for India's currency. It also covers the relevant activities of private firms, such as banks, and other public agencies, such as the Crown Agents and the Bank of England. It assesses the effectiveness of the India Office's operations, examines the impact of Indian finance on the City and on the British economy, and contributes to the debates on how far those governing India were working to promote economic development in India or to secure a financial return for British investors. Among the many interesting findings are that Indian finance was managed by a small network of largely Jewish officials, brokers and bankers; that a large proportion of Indian debt was held by City institutions and not by the investing public as previously believed; and that the India Office was occasionally willing to act illegitimately by turning a blind eye to the illicit actions of its service providers. David Sunderland is a Reader and Principal Lecturer at the University of Greenwich Business School. He is the author of Managing the British Empire: The Crown Agents for the Colonies, 1833-1914 and Managing British Colonial and Post-Colonial Development: The Crown Agents, 1920-1980, both published by Boydell and Brewer.