One of his first acts was to introduce the IIbert Bill, which would have given Indians more legal rights, including the right of Indian judges to judge Europeans in court. Despite being a progressive step, the bill was vehemently opposed by Europeans who were horrified at the prospect of being judged by native Indians.
One of his other efforts was to introduce a Bengal land tenancy bill, which became the Bengal Tenancy Act 1885, in order to improve the condition of peasants.
Lord Ripon repealed the unpopular Vernacular Press Act of 1878.
Lord Ripon is best known for the Resolution of 1882, which granted Indians the right to local self-government. The scheme of local self-government would develop municipal institutions that had previously been directly under the control of the British Crown. A series of laws would establish local self-government bodies in both rural and urban areas. He is known as the “Father of Local-Self Government in India” as a result of this.
Appointed the Hunter Commission, led by William Wilson Hunter, which called for large-scale educational reforms at both the primary and secondary levels of education.
Important recommendations of Hunter Commission includes:
Primary education should be expanded by the government in a determined effort.
Both literary and vocational instruction should be included in secondary education.
The commission found that the country lacked adequate facilities for female education.
Introduced the First Factory Act of 1881, which reduced the working hours of local factory workers and sought to improve their working conditions.
Lord Ripon was also instrumental in the reorganisation of the Madras Forest Department and the expansion of systematic forest conservation in India.