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Importance of Pitt’s India Act

It brought many important changes in the constitution of the Company. It constituted a dept of state in England known as the Board of Control whose special function was to control the policy if the Court of Directors. The Act helped the unification of India by making the Governor-General supreme over the Governors of the other presidencies. The deletion of the one member from the Executive Council of the Governor-General made his position stronger. The British Parliament claimed supremacy over the possessions of the Company in India. This Act made it clear that Company’s direct relation is with trade and not with politics.

The Charter Act restricted the patronage of the Directors. It centralized the administration of the English Company of India. Governor General of Bengal became the Governor General of India. Presidencies of Bombay, Madras and Bengal were placed under the control of Governor General in council. President of the Board of Control became the Minister for Indian affairs. The Charter Act also brought about the legislative centralization of India. Governor General in council was authorized to make Articles of War and code of military discipline and provide for the administration of justice. Governor General in council could not alter the constitution of the company or amend the charter itself. The Charter Act added a new member to the executive council of the Governor General known as the law member.

The number of the members of the Council of the governors of Bombay and Madras was reduced to two. Bombay and Madras were to keep their separate armies under their commanders in chief but they were to be under the control of the central government. The Act provided for the codification of laws in India. Provision was made for the appointment of a law commission for that purpose. The Act of 1833 brought about important and far reaching changes in the Constitution of India. The company was relieved of its monopoly of tea trade in India and of the trade with China thus completing the work of the Charter Act of 1813.