For the British Raj, it seems to have been the easiest thing
Lord Canning can be seen in this portrait, meeting a local king: Maharaja Ranbir Singh, of the Jammu and Kashmir province. It is an intimate portrait of the successful, legendary and affluent days of the mighty British Raj. India is a land that was once upon a time united with Bangladesh, where the state was known as Bengal – precisely, during that time it was subjected to powerful colonisation efforts by Great Britain.
The Dutch, the French, the Spanish and the Portuguese Empires, tried their hand at doing more than just send out legendary map-makers and charters from their lands, such as Vasco Da Gama, to India to learn more about this place floating on the Indian ocean, and yet the British Raj’s contribution in discovering and ruling India as a British colony has been noteworthy. But what is interesting is that India has always been a land torn apart by numerous wars in it’s many states. It took many centuries for India to become a united state. Home to Indus Valley Civilizations, Vedic cultures, Sanskrit societies and the British trying since India was conceived off to implant colonization there, it took the Maurya Empire (circa 322 BC) to bring the country together and aim for prosperity.
The remaining colonial European settlements were deeply interested in exploiting the British Empire and subjugating populations all across from Newfoundland to Bombay, and preventing prosperity reaching them – these people were inherently interested in rising in Europe and lucrative trade prospects in all of Britain’s colonies. All this plundering by Europeans at the time, led the Raj to dive down into improving the economy by following the Mughal taxation system. Soon, the Raj’s popularity and influence grew amongst princely states. They were able to reunite the land in ways and manners no former local kingdom (or ruler) ever could.
It is not difficult to see why: the princes of some 600 or so states were recognized as local rulers, directly under the observation and control of the Raj. Large portions of their correspondence, how they are to govern, local politics were all terribly influenced by the Raj. This period marked the intensive colonization by Great Britain, leaving behind high-order diplomacy that was the order of the day for how the country liked to deal with India. Bound by treaties, which dictated the rights of princes, their loyalty extended beyond pieces of papers and the red royal seal of the Raj: they had a dangerous distaste at the thought of rebellion against the British Raj.