Modern History Simplified: Peasant Movement – Deccan Riots (1870s)

  1. The ryots of Deccan region of western India were trapped in a vicious network with the moneylender as the exploiter and the main beneficiary. These moneylenders were mostly outsiders—Marwaris or Gujaratis.
  2. Also they suffered heavy taxation under the Ryotwari system.
  3. In addition, there was a crash in cotton prices after the end of the American Civil War in 1864.
  4. To make matters worse, the Government’s decision to raise the land revenue by 50% in 1867.
  5. A social boycott movement was organised by the ryots against the “outsider” moneylenders in 1874.  
  6. This movement spread rapidly to Poona, Ahmednagar, Solapur and Satara
  7. The social boycott was transformed into agrarian riots however the Government succeeded in repressing the movement.
  8. As a conciliatory measure, the Deccan Agriculturists Relief Act was passed in 1879.

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