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1857: The First War of Independence

The First War Of Indian Independence, or The Indian Mutiny as known to the British, was a period of uprising in northern and central India against British rule in 1857-1858. Although, the First War Of Indian Independence is considered to be the first united rebellion against colonial rule in India, a much smaller ethnic revolt against the Portuguese took place in Goa during 1787, and is known as the Conspiracy Of The Pintos.

Mangal Pandey and the march to Delhi
In March 1857, Mangal Pandey, a soldier of the 34th Native Infantry, attacked his British sergeant and wounded an adjutant. General Hearsay, who said Pandey was in some kind of "religious frenzy," ordered a jemadar to arrest him but the jemadar refused. Mangal Pandey was hanged on 7 April along with the jemadar. The whole regiment was dismissed as a collective punishment. Other sepoys felt this was too harsh.

On May 10th, when the 11th and 20th cavalry assembled, they broke rank and turned on their commanding officers. They then liberated the 3rd Regiment, and on 11 May, the sepoys reached Delhi. They were joined by other Indians from the local bazaar.

About the same time in Jhansi, the army rebelled and killed the British army officers. In 1858, when the British army marched towards Jhansi, Rani Lakshmi Bai, the queen of Jhansi, assembled an army of 14,000 volunteers to fight the invaders. The war lasted 2 weeks but eventually the British won.

Indian mutiny

All text of this article available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License (see Copyrights for details).

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