Assess the main administrative issues and socio-cultural problems in the integration process of Indian Princely States.

Sample Answer:


Prime objective to policy makers after the transfer of power in 1947 was to consolidate the disintegrated Indian territories in provinces and over 500 princely states. This task had many administrative and socio-cultural problems.


Main administrative issues:

  • These states followed different administrative methods; some were aristocratic, strong differences between the states themselves, people with different opinions.
  • Some princely states were in favour of administrative control under Pakistan such as Jodhpur and Junagarh.
  • Rulers and kings were reluctant to give up the revenue powers and control over the civil administration.
  • Extent of privileges to be retained, nature of compensation and hierarchy among princes, privy purses etc. were points of contention. 

Main socio-cultural problems:

  • Majority-Minority issue in states like Junagarh, Bhopal, and other.
  • Language issues like Telugu speaking areas of Hyderabad had fear of integrating into Marathi speaking Bombay presidency.
  • Economic divide was seen in western princely states with other states such difference between Baroda and Bombay presidency.
  • There were difference on social development among princely states such as Travancore to other states in south India.


Despite these hurdles in the integration of princely states, good leadership of Sardar Patel, Jawaharlal Nehru, Lord Mountbatten and V P Menon, helped India to gain the unified nation before the enforcement of Indian constitution

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