Indian Empire (English)Timeline: Principia Moderni III (Map Game)
بھارتی سلطنت (Urdu)
اللہ کی افواج فاتح اور روشن خیال ہو! (Urdu)
Forces of Allah be Triumphant and Enlightened! (English)
The Indian Empire in 1937, at the height of its power
|Other cities||Chittagong, Kolkata, Pandua, Coimbatore, Hyderabad, Bhopal, Udaipur, Surat, Peshawar, Karachi, Ahmadabad, Lahore, Multan|
|Official languages||Urdu, Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Telegu, Spanish, Punjabi, Sindhi|
|Ethnic groups||Bengali, Tamil, Telegu, Assamese, Punjabi, Sindhi|
|-||Upper house||Majlis e Shura|
|-||Lower house||Majlis e Aam|
|-||Establishment of Indian Empire||1888 A.D.|
The Empire of India, sometimes referred to as the Indian Empire or Hindustan, is a state that borders the Bay of Bengal, Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and controls the majority of Southern Asia. The Empire is generally regarded as a successor state to the traditional Hindustan Empire for it is the second Empire to have united India since 1745. However, it is the Sultanate of Bengal that is generally considered as the de facto predecessor, given that it was the Bengali Sultanate that united India.
Following centuries of political, economic and cultural success, the virtual collapse of the Hindustan Empire in 1790 dealt a deathblow to the Akhand Bharat ideology. The 7 successor states to the Hindustan Empire were ethnically diverse nations and as such, the chances of India uniting once again were regarded as nill.
The Battle of Coimbatore in 1799 led to the capture of Coimbatore, the capital of the Vijaynagara Rajya by the Bengali Coalition. This led to the unification of India under Bengali Empire, however the Queen not keen on repeating the mistakes of her predecessors subsequently announced the Indian Empire to signify a new and united nationalist era. .
For more information in regards to earlier history, see main article: History of the Bengal Sultanate
The establishment of the Indian Empire on June 6, 1888 under Empress Farah Shah was seen as one of the turning points of Indian history, as India had not ever been united since the days of Ashoka. The Imperial authorities had particularly taken note of the need for the Indian Empire to be recognized as the sole representative of the Indian people, and hence the Empire had immediately set out to press the Roman Empire, Lankan Empire and Hamburg to give up foreign enclaves. Attempts to gain international recognition forced the Empire to even apply for the 1890 Olympics, unaware of what was yet to await them in the future. On March 24, 1891, the previously mentioned states had soon turned in their respective enclaves to the Indian Empire as per the Kolkata Agreement , which many historians have considered a major event since no Asian power had been able to effectively pressurize a European state during those times. The agreement not only increased the morale and pride of the Indian people but led to rise of nationalism throughout Asia as well. The Indians no longer saw threat from the 'white man' and soon launched an attack upon Netherlands on February 4, 1894. The War of Indian Hegemony that was subsequently fought led to the complete defeat of the Dutch Empire by Indian forces and international recognition of the might of the Indian Empire, who were able to soon occupy Aceh despite protests by the Spanish Empire. Only a single year later, on 1895, the Tripartite Pact was signed in Baghdad between three major Asian powers who had recognized each others capability and the collective interest in combating the menace of Communism and Imperialism. By 1898, the Indian Empire would drastically expand its sphere of influence as it would attempt to meddle with Lankan affairs by effectively forcing Lanka to withdraw a controversial law that restricted Tamil.
The Empire is a absolute hereditary monarchy, and the general system for governance was inherited from the Sultanate of Bengal. The current Empress is Farah Shah.
The Empire is also governed to a certain degree by various representatives and diplomats of the Hashemite Caliphate who maintain authority over religion and religious issues in the state. However, these 'diplomats' are appointed by the Empress of India once a proposal is forwarded by the Caliph of the Hashemite Caliphate.
The Indian Empire is also divided into provinces, with an Amir appointed for each province by the Empress, responsible to maintain peace and calm in their respective province. The Amir is responsible to impose reforms in their respective provinces in order to modernize and develop them, and each province is given a specific budget from the state treasury based on the resources, population and size of each province. The Amir is also responsible for raising a specific number of soldiers annually, through military colleges and institutions who would then be enlisted into the national military. Besides the Amir, a Qazi is appointed by the Empress for each province, as a judge to make decisions based off the Shariah Law, with jurisdiction over all legal matters regarding Muslims. The minorites are not tried under the Shariah Law, and are faced with their own laws based off their religion. A Dewan is also appointed by the Empress for each respective province, for collection of tax, to regulate the receipt and disbursement of the revenue of each province. These Dewan are transferred from province to another after a two year period. The Amir, Qazi and Dewan are directly answerable to the Empress and not to one another.
To generally keep himself aware of the situation throughout the Empire, and to directly handle complaints of the people against particular Amirs, Qazis or Dewans, a two houses have been established. The Upper House, also known as the Majlis e Shura consists of prominent members of the Ashrafi dynasty. The Upper House generally acts to advise the Empress on all matters, and can even impeach an incumbent Empress if a majority is reached. One is elected into the Majlis e Shura through a proposal forwarded either by the Empress or the Lower House, after which debates and discussions are held amongst the members and a decision is made. Members of the Majlis e Shura cannot themselves propose for anyone to join and a member of the Majlis e Shura can never become Empress. The Lower House, referred to as the Majlis e Aam constituting of a larger body, consists of representatives of various tribes and dynasties with whom a dynastic union has been established. The Majlis e Aam is called into session on every month, and members of the Majlis e Aam can have direct audience with the Empress to raise complaints against any particular person or any decision. Members of the Lower House are elected by their own respective tribes and families.
Annually, the Majlis e Shura, Majlis e Aam, Amirs, Qazis and Dewans gather together at Kolkata to discuss national as well as provincial issues. Besides this gathering, the Amirs, Qazis, Dewans and Majlis e Aam are summoned each month separately to discuss issues after which they are allowed to return to their respective provinces. The Majlis e Shura in contrast remain at the capital to advise the Empress and are collectively summoned on special, and random occasions depending upon the situation.
The current division of land in the Indian Empire is into three different types of divisions, which it also inherited from the Sultanate of Bengal. Khedivates are autonomous territories with special needs or are considerably far away from central authority. As such, they are ruled by Ashrafi Princes who may or may not have established a dynastic union with the local tribes. Their rulers are hereditary, have broad control over what happens in their own realm, and can, within limits, raise and manage their own armed forces. The rulers of Khedivates form part of the Majlis e Aam, and are summoned to the capital every month. Wilayets are 'provinces' with an Amir appointed by the Empress to rule over the province for any specific time period. They maintain a certain amount of autonomy but are generally linked to the central authority, and are provided with a federal budget from the state treasury which the provincial authorities can either utilise or save up in the provincial treasury. Tax and revenue collected in a Wilayet by a Dewan is transferred to the state treasury, and in certain situations; the provincial revenue sent to the state treasury may be much larger to what is directed back to the province in the form of a federal budget. In contrast, the Khedivates are not provided with a federal budget, and they depend upon their provincial treasury which is made up from revenue and tax collected from the populace. 20% of all revenue collected in Khedivates is transferred to the state treasury at Kolkata. Wilayets are further divided into Sanjak or provincial districts, which each having an Amil appointed, who are generally military governors. They also collaborate with Dewans and Qazis on issues such as tax collection and imposing a law. Besides Khedivates and Wilayets, Eyalets exist which are generally 'federal districts' directly under the control of the Empress, with no Amir appointed. Eyalets are generally cities with significant importance to be put under the control of the Central Government.
Khedivates and Wilayets also tend to have their own laws, but their are certain 'national' laws that apply to the entire Empire.
The Indian Military is the descendant of the legions and navy of the Hindustan Empire. The military has historically been famous for its strength and power, and it still maintains that prowses.
The Indian Army is based on the organizational unit called the Kateebat, and each regimental commander is known as a Quaid. The overall commander of the armed forces, other than the Empress, is known as the Rais. The army numbers around 720,000 total soldiers. Imperial guard units include the Kolkata Guard and the Janissaries, with the latter being named in remembrance of the Ottoman elite infantry units.
Since the military reforms of Jalaluddin Fateh Shah, a battalion has been changed from a formation of 300-500 soldiers to one of 1000 soldiers. In addition, the technology possessed by the Imperial Guard units has been substantially improved.
The military was reformed once again following the Ashrafi Revolution. The basic unit of the new Army was renamed Faleeq, although the size of the regiment remained unchanged. The Janissaries were also now instructed to guard the Majlis e Shura and any of the Majlis e Aam while they are in Kolkata, as well as receiving certain benefits.
After the Bengali Fitna, the Bengali Army was vastly underfunded and manned, resulting in large-scale instability and revolts. At that time the most common equipment of the Army were swords, spears, and crossbows along with shields and chain mail. As the Empire recovered and could afford more training and advanced weapons for its troops.
By mid 19th century, the Bengali Army was one of the strongest in India, capable of fielding over 1,200,000 on the field and perhaps more depending on the severity of the situation. It was also one of the most technologically advanced in the subcontinent, with sophisticated line tactics, siege artillery, and some of the finest muskets available. By this point most armor had been phased out, but plate armor was still available for the Kolkata Guard and the heavy cavalry. Eventually, the Bengali Army was renamed the Indian Army.
Prominent Indian generals of the modern era include Imran Ashraf Shah, who famously won at the Battle of Rakhsevana and conquered Deccan.
The Indian Navy was once the most powerful navy in the world, but now the navy is a shadow of its former self. The Empire has major shipyards at Kolkata, Mahmudpur and Chittagong. The navy appears to have reclaimed a significant level of prestige following its decisive victory over Deccan in the Battle of Shahipur.
The total size of the navy stands at around 400 warships.
Directly after the Bengali Fitna, the State Treasury of Bengal had largely been reduced to a few coins, and the Empire faced difficulty in maintaining its integrity as it increasingly faced revolts. Initially, loans from Jaunpur to Bengal sufficed, but eventually Bengal was able to regain control over global jute and muslin trade. With time, the nation expanded upon its borders and soon established dominance over the Bay of Bengal, Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean thus obtaining control of various trade routes to Asia, passing directly through the Straits of Malacca. As such, India had re-established the trade empire it once possessed and was able to assert itself once again as a major center for international commerce. By the 20th Century, the Indian Empire which replaced the Sultanate of Bengal had one of the largest economies.
The former capital of India, Pandua existed as a major commerce and industrial centre in India, largely being utilised as a land route for Chinese and Indian trade. The importance of the city grew with time, in particular due to the conquest of India by Bengal, and the opening of China to foreign merchants. As such, many looked towards the silk road passing directly through Pandua, and therefore, the city played a major role in South East Asian and Far East trade. India itself existed as the junction of trade routes on the Southeastern Silk Road, which passed directly through Pandua. Moreover, India was a center of the worldwide muslin, silk and pearl trade, thus establishing a total monopoly over European markets for such goods. Besides Pandua, the Indian capital of Kolkata existed at a strategic location and helped to solidify Indian control over the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea, which allowed Indiato maintain proximity with the Straits of Malacca. Therefore, Kolkata had soon taken over the position as the epicenter of South Asian trade.
The currency was reformed by Empress Farah Shah in 1888, standardizing the currency and also officially introducing gold currency due to a desperately needed reform. The official currency in the Indian Empire is the Indian Tanki, so named for the once-existant Bengali barter system, renamed as the Indian Tanki from Bengali Tanki in 1888. The well-regulated gold-based Tanki is widely utilised in India, implemented in the former two and plays a major role throughout the the world as the major currency in commerce and trade.
Bait-ul-Maal, (literally, The house of money) is the department that deals with the revenues and all other economic matters of the state, based in Kolkata where the state treasury is also present. It is headed by a Treasury Officer assisted by Dewans, specifically appointed by mutual consultation between the Empress, Majlis e Shura and Majlis e Aam. A separate Accounts Department is also set up and it was required to maintain record of all that was spent.
All revenue and tax collected in every Wilayet by their respective provincial Dewan is transferred to the State Treasury at Kolkata. In contrast, from Khedivates the Dewan transfers only 20% of all revenue and tax to the state treasury, sending the rest to the provincial treasury of the Khedivate which is why the Khedivates are never provided with a federal budget. Annually, 80% of all the revenue at the state treasury is divided into varying federal budgets, assigned to each Wilayet and is then transferred to provincial treasury of that particular Wilayet. In some circumstances, it is possible for the revenue collected from a Wilayet to be greater or lesser than the federal budget assigned to it. From the remaining 20% of the state treasury, 10% is assigned to Eyalets and as such, distributed directly by the Empress. The remaining 10% is kept in the form of reserves to be utilized in times of warfare, plague, famine, or if any Khedivate, Wilayet or Eyalet went bankrupt.
The most senior noble in the Empire is, as expected, the Empress. Below him is the Majlis e Shura which constitutes of senior and influential members of the royal family. The Majlis e Aam consisting of the Nawabs of various tribes and Khedivates inside the Empire, are the next most senior. Below the Majlis e Aam are the Amirs, Dewans and Qazis, answering to the Empress only. On par with the Amirs, Dewans and Qazis is the Crown Prince, who is to succeed the Empress. Below him are members of the the Royal Family, the Empire's native knightly orders, such as the Nishan e Ghazi, as well as minor nobles and any recipients of foreign honors.
Most of the Empire is composed of commoners, or people who have noble blood or reward. Despite this, it is entirely possible for commoners to become nobility, if they were ever to marry into the royal family.
There are no serfs in Indian society nor have there ever been, although a system does exist where locals are provided with daily wages by landlords. Slavery is legal in the Empire, although it is generally discouraged as a social stigma and possessing Muslim slaves is a crime. Despite this, slavery is still present in many areas of the Empire, and is only absent in the urban areas.
The Empire is known for its many versions of art. The medieval art of the Empire is known as Sadanga or Six Limbs, and it is a characteristic part of traditional Indian culture. Murals and sculptures are also prominent in Indian art, and such art is recognized by the liberal elite as having a major role in Indian culture. In contrast, the conservative masses denounce molding of sculptures as immoral.
The Empire has a wide array of architecture that sets it apart from the rest of the world. Some prominent structures are the Mausoleum of Fakhruddin Mubarak Shah, Adina Mosque, the Somapura Mahavihara and the Baitul Mukarram.
Indian cuisine has evolved over the millennia, but at the current mostly consists of seafood, vegetables and dairy products, along with luxury foods like honey. The Empire is a melting pot of cuisine, and it has changed widely over time.
The Indian Empire use the Islamic Calender, which puts the date of 1900 A.D. as 1317 A.H. (After Hijri). One of the first reforms of Mahmud Shah I was to make the Islamic calender official along with the Bengali Calender which had historically served as the Calender for the authorities of Pandua. As of now both calenders, that is Islamic and Bengali are officially used in the Empire.
The Empire is noted for its distinct way of referring to ethnicities. While all members of the Empire are generally considered as part of the same Ummah except for Non-Muslims, it has a diverse background of Bengali, Tamils, Telegus, Punjabis and Assamese etc.
In referring to other ethnic groups outside the Empire, "Timurid" or "Mugol" is used to describe Central Asians. In the same manner, "Burmi" is used to describe people of Burmese descent, Hispanivi is used to describe people of European descent and "Vijaynagri" is used for people who are of Tamil descent.