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List Of Governors-General of India & Viceroys During British Period

List Of Governors-General of India & Viceroys During British Period


General Awareness is considered an integral part of the competitive exams. From history to polity, facts regarding General Science, Physics, Biology, our constitution, economy, banks and almost everything. Questions from these spheres can be found in SSC Exam and Railways Exam Question Papers.


Being an SSC exam or Railway exam appearing aspirant, this list will help you to know the complete details of the Governor General and Viceroy of India from the year 1772 to 1947. It also covers the important achievements and events that took place during their time.


First governor general of British India was LORD WILLIAM BENTICK.

  • Chartet act of 1833 made the Governor General of Bengal as the Governor General of India. And first such one was LORD WILLIAM BENTICK.
  • LORD WARREN HASTINGS was the first Governor general of bengal. Many confuse Warren hastings as first governor general of India.
  • And in 1858 after the Revolt of 1857, British government enacted an act called Act for the Good Government of India.
  • By this act, the designation of the Governor General of India was changed to the VICEROY OF INDIA.
  • And the first such VICEROY OF INDIA was LORD CANNING.



Following is the Gk Notes On Governor Generals Of India


Took office

Left office



Warren Hastings

20 October 1773

1 February 1785

» Regulating Act of 1773


» Supreme Court at Calcutta


» Asiatic Society of Bengal


» English Translation of Bhagwat Gita

Sir John Macpherson

1 February 1785

12 September 1786




The Earl Cornwallis

12 September 1786

28 October 1793

»Established lower courts and appellate courts


»Sanskrit College established by Jonathan Duncan


»Permanent Settlement in Bihar and Bengal in 1793


» Introduction of Cornwallis Code


» Introduction of Civil Services in India

Sir John Shore

28 October 1793

18 March 1798

» Policy of Non-intervention


» Charter Act of 1793

Sir Alured Clarke

18 March 1798

18 May 1798




The Marquess Wellesley

18 May 1798

30 July 1805

»Introduction of Subsidiary Alliance


» Fourth Anglo-Mysore War 1799


» Fort William College at Calcutta


» Formation of Madras Presidency in 1801

The Marquess Cornwallis

30 July 1805

5 October 1805



Sir George Barlow, Bt

10 October 1805

31 July 1807




The Lord Minto

31 July 1807

4 October 1813

» Charter Act of 1813


The Marquess of Hastings

4 October 1813

9 January 1823

»Ended the policy of Non-intervention


» Third Anglo-Maratha War (1816-1818)


»Creation of Bombay Presidency in 1818


»Establishment of Ryotwari System in Madras

John Adam

9 January 1823

1 August 1823




The Lord Amherst

1 August 1823

13 March 1828



William Butterworth Bayley

13 March 1828

4 July 1828




Lord William Bentinck

4 July 1828


» Charter Act 1833



Lord William Bentinck


20 March 1835



Sir Charles Metcalfe, Bt

20 March 1835

4 March 1836




The Lord Auckland

4 March 1836

28 February 1842



The Lord Ellenborough

28 February 1842

June 1844



William Wilberforce Bird

June 1844

23 July 1844




Sir Henry Hardinge

23 July 1844

12 January 1848



The Marquess of Dalhousie

12 January 1848

28 February 1856

» Doctrine of Lapse


» Charles Wood Dispatch


»1st Railway line connecting Bombay and Thane


» Post Office Act, 1854


»Established Public Works Department


»Engineering College was established at Roorkee

The Viscount Canning

28 February 1856

1 November 1858

»University of Bombay, Calcutta and Madras were set up in 1857


» The revolt of 1857


»The Government of India Act, 1858


»Withdrew Doctrine of Lapse.



The Earl Canning

1 November 1858

21 March 1862



The Earl of Elgin

21 March 1862

20 November 1863



Sir Robert Napier

21 November 1863

2 December 1863




Sir William Denison

2 December 1863

12 January 1864




Sir John Lawrence, Bt

12 January 1864

12 January 1869

»Telegraphic communication was opened with Europe.


»High Courts were established at Calcutta, Bombay and Madras in 1865.


»Created the Indian Forest department.

The Earl of Mayo

12 January 1869

8 February 1872

»Started the process of financial decentralization in India.


»For the first time in Indian history, a census was held in 1871.


»Organised the Statistical Survey of India.


»Was the only Viceroy to be murdered in office by a Pathan convict in the Andamans in 1872.

Sir John Strachey

9 February 1872

23 February 1872




The Lord Napier

24 February 1872

3 May 1872




The Lord Northbrook

3 May 1872

12 April 1876



The Lord Lytton

12 April 1876

8 June 1880

»Known as the Viceroy to reverse characters.


»Organised the Grand ‘Delhi Durbar’ in 1877 to decorate Queen Victoria with the title of ‘Kaiser I Hind’.


»Arms act (1878) made it mandatory for Indians to acquire license for arms.


»Passed the infamous Vernacular Press act (1878).

The Marquess of Ripon

8 June 1880

13 December 1884

»Liberal person, who sympathized with Indians.


»Repeated the Vernacular Press act (1882)


»Passed the local self government act (1882)


»Took steps to improve primary & secondary education (on William Hunter Commission’s recommendations).


»The I Factory act, 1881, aimed at prohibiting child labour.


»Passed the libert Bill (1883) which enabled Indian district magistrates to try European criminals. But this was withdrawn later.

The Earl of Dufferin

13 December 1884

10 December 1888

»Indian National Congress was formed during his tenure.


The Marquess of Lansdowne

10 December 1888

11 October 1894

»II Factory act (1891) granted a weekly holiday and stipulated working hours for women and children, although it failed to address concerns such as work hours for men.


»Categorization of Civil Services into Imperial, Provincial and Subordinate.


»Indian Council act of 1892 was passed.


»Appointment of Durand Commission to define the line between British India and Afghanistan.

The Earl of Elgin

11 October 1894

6 January 1899

»Great famine of (1896 – 1897)


»Lyall Commission was appointed.

The Lord Curzon of Kedleston

6 January 1899


»Passed the Indian Universities act (1904) in which official control over the Universities was increased.


»Partitioned Bengal (October 16, 1905) into two provinces Bengal (proper) & East Bengal & Assam.


»Appointed a Police Commission under Sir Andrew Frazer to enquire into the police administration of every province.


»The risings of the frontier tribes in 1897 – 98 led him to create the North Western Frontier Province (NWFP).


»Passed the Ancient Monuments Protection act (1904), to restore India’s cultural heritage. Thus the Archaeological Survey of India was established.


»Passed the Indian Coinage and Paper Currency act (1899) and put India on a gold standard.


»Extended railways to a great extent.

The Earl of Minto



»There was great political unrest in India. Various acts were passed to curb the revolutionary activities. Extremists like Lala Laipat Rai and Ajit Singh (in May, 1907) and Bal Gangadhar Tilak (in July, 1908) were sent to Mandalay jail in Burma.


»The Indian Council act of 1909 or the Morley Minto Reforms was passed.

The Lord Hardinge of Penshurst


4       April 1916

»Held a durbar in December, 1911 to celebrate the coronation of King George V.


»Partition of Bengal was cancelled (1911), capital shifted from Calcutta to Delhi (1911).


»A bomb was thrown at him; but he escaped unhurt (December 23, 1912).


»Gandhi ji came back to India from South Africa (1915).


»Annie Besant announced the Home Rule Movement.

The Lord Chelmsford


2       April 1921

»August Declaration of 1917, whereby control over the Indian government would be gradually transferred to the Indian people.


»The government of India act in 1919 (Montague Chelmsford reforms) was passed.


»Rowlatt act of 1919; Jallianwala Bagh Massacre (April 13, 1919).


»Non Cooperation Movement.


»An Indian Sir S.P.Sinha was appointed the Governor of Bengal.


»A Women’s university was founded at Poona in 1916.


»Saddler Commission was appointed in 1917 to envisage new educational policy.

The Earl of Reading


3       April 1926

»Rowlatt act was repeated along with the Press act of 1910.


»Suppressed non – cooperation movement.


»Prince of Wales visited India in November, 1921.


»Moplah rebellion (1921) took place in Kerala.


»Ahmedabad session of 1921.


»Formation of Swaraj Party.


»Vishwabharati University started functioning in 1922.


»Communist part was founded in 1921 by M.N. Roy.


»Kakory Train Robbery on August 9, 1925.


»Communal riots of 1923 – 25 in Multan, Amritsar, Delhi, etc.


»Swami Shraddhanand, a great nationalist and a leader of the Arya Samajists, was murdered in communal orgy.

The Lord Irwin



»Simon Commission visited India in 1928.


»Congress passed the Indian Resolution in 1929.


»Dandi March (March 12, 1930).


»Civil Disobedience Movement (1930).


»First Round Table Conference held in England in 1930.


»Gandhi Irwin Pact (March 5, 1931) was signed and Civil Disobediance Movement was withdrawn.


»Martydorm of Jatin Das after 64 days hunger strike (1929).

The Earl of Willingdon


18   pril 1936

»Second Round Table conference in London in 1931.


»On his return Gandhi ji was again arrested and Civil Disobedience Movement was resumed in January, 1932.


»Communal Awards (August 16, 1932) assigned seats to different religious communities. Gandhi ji went on a epic fast in protest against this division.


»Third Round Table conference in 1932.


»Poona Pact was signed.


»Government of India act (1935) was passed

The Marquess of Linlithgow


1      October 1943

»Government of India act enforced in the provinces. Congress ministries formed in 8 out of 11 provinces. They remained in power for about 2 years till October 1939, when they gave up offices on the issue of India having been dragged into the II World War. The Muslim League observed the days as ‘Deliverance Say’ (22 December)


»Churchill became the British PM in May, 1940. He declared that the Atlantic Charter (issued jointly by the UK and US, stating to give sovereign rights to those who have been forcibly deprived of them) does not apply to India.


»Outbreak of World War II in 1939.


»Cripps Mission in 1942.


»Quit India Movement (August 8, 1942).

The Viscount Wavell


21   February 1947

»Arranged the Shimla Conference on June 25, 1945 with Indian National Congress and Muslim League; failed.


»Cabinet Mission Plan (May 16, 1946).


»Elections to the constituent assembly were held and an Interim Government was appointed under Nehru.


»First meeting of the constituent assembly was held on December 9, 1946.

The Viscount Mountbatten of Burma


      15  August 1947

»Last Viceroy of British India and the first Governor General of free India.


»Partition of India decided by the June 3 Plan.


»Indian Independence Act passed by the British parliament on July 4, 1947, by which India became independent on August 15, 1947.


»Retried in June 1948 and was succeeded by C. Rajagopalachari (the first and the last Indian Governor General of free India).



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