Battle of Buxar (1764)

The Battle of Buxar was fought on 23 October 1764, between the forces of East India Company under Hector Munro, and the combined armies of Mir Qasim, the Nawab of Bengal; Shuja-ud-Daulah, the Nawab of Awadh, and the Mughal Emperor Shah Alam II.

The Battle was fought at Buxar, then a territory of Bengal, and it was a decisive victory for the British East India Company.

Background of Battle:
  • As the company thought that Mir Qasim would be an ideal puppet for them, but he belied the expectations.
  • Mir Qasim was the ablest nawab among all the successors of Alivardi Khan.
  • Mir Qasim Shifted his capital from Murshidabad to Munger in Bihar for a safe distance from the Company at Calcutta.
  • Kept the bureaucracy with the men of his own choice
  • He started remodeling the army to enhance its skill and efficiency.
  • The Tension started between English and Nawab due to:
    • The irresponsible behavior of Ram Narayan – Deputy Governor of Bihar, as he was not submitting account of revenues of Bihar.
    • On the other hand, misuse of the Company’s dastak or trade permit by Company officials also resulted in tension between the Nawab and the English.
    • Misuse of dastak led to the loss of tax revenue to the Nawab.
    • The Company had obtained the right to trade in Bengal without paying dues or tolls by an Emperial ferman, but they used coercive methods to get goods at cheaper rates, which was against the spirit of duty-free trade.
  • Mir Qasim decided to abolish the duties altogether, but the British were against it.
  • There was a tussle over trade duties between Nawab and Company, that led to the outbreak of wars between English and Mir Qasim in 1763.
  • The English won Katwah, Murshidabad, Giria, Sooty, and Munger. Mir Qasim fled to Awadh (Oudh).
  • Mir Qasim formed a confederacy with Nawab of Awadh- Shuja-ud-daulah, and Mughal Emperor Shah Alam II, to recover Bengal from English.
The Battle:

In October 1764, the combined armies of Mir Qasim, The Nawab of Awadh, and Shah Ala II fought against the forces of English at Buxar. In the war, the armies of Nawab and Mughal emperor were decisively defeated by British forces under the captaincy of Major Hector Munro.

  • In this war combined Mughal forces numbered about 40,000 men, and Monroe’s forces numbered about 10,000 men, but lack of coordination between the various Mughal forces was the main reason for their defeat.
Result and significances of Battle:
  • The Victory of the Company in the battle confirmed the British Power over the Bengal.
  • In this war, the Mughal Emperor of India was also defeated by the English. So the end of the Battle resulted in the Supremacy of English over the whole country.
  • The Mughal Emperor surrendered the sovereignty of Bengal in the Treaty of Allahabad in 1765 with the British.
  • Mir Jafar was reinstated as the Nawab of Bengal, and he agreed to hand over Midnapore, Burdwan, and Chittagong to English for maintenance of their army.
  • New Nawab was just like a puppet as the expectations of English
  • Robert Clive became the first Governor of Bengal.
  • The Company also was permitted duty-free trade in Bengal, Except for a duty of two percent on salt.
  • After the death of Mir Jafar in 1765, his son Najim-ud-daulah was appointed as nawab, but the real power went to the hands of the English.
The Treaty of Allahabad: Robert Clive concluded two treaties at Allahabad in August 1765

1.      With Nawab of Awadh

2.      with Shah Alam II

The Treaty with Shuja-ud-Daula, Nawab of Awadh
  • Allahabad and Kara surrendered to Mughal Emperor Shah Alam II
  • As war indemnity Rs. 50 lakh paid to the Company.
  • The full possession of his estate was given to Balwant Singh, the Zamindar of Banaras. 
The Second treaty with Mughal Emperor, Shah Alam II
  •  Reside at Allahabad under the protection of Company
  •  A Ferman granted the Diwani of Bengal, Bihar, and Orrisa to the East India Company in lieu of an annual payment of Rs. 26 lakhs.
  • Rs. 53 lakh was given to the company by the Mughal emperor in return for the Nizamat function (Military defense, police, and administration) of the said provinces.


Differences in the Significances of the Carnatic wars, Battle of Plassey, and the battle of Buxar  are:
The Carnatic wars (1740-1748, 1749- 1753, 1758-1763) has proven the supremacy of the British in trade in India The Battle of Plassey (1757) Laid the foundation of the British empire The Battle of Buxar (1764), grant great power to Northern India and Supremacy over the whole country.



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