ferocity on both sides, and reprisals were often savage.
Shock and Introspection among English                   British public opinion was
profoundly shocked by the scale of the uprising and by the loss of life on both
sides—involving the massacre by the rebels of captured Europeans, including
women and children, and the indiscriminate killing of Indian soldiers and
civilians by the avenging British armies. Shock inevitably stimulated much
self-examination, out of which emerged an explanation of these terrible
events; this explanation has exercised a powerful influence over opinion in
Britain ever since. Indians were assumed to have been a deeply conservative
people whose traditions and ways of life had been disregarded by their
British rulers. Reforms, new laws, new technology, even Christianity, had
been forced upon them. They found these deeply offensive and were driven
to resist them with violence.
Controversy on the Nature of Revolt There is also a general controversy
on the nature and character of the revolt. In this, an attempt is made to answer
a number of questions such as whether it was just a mutiny as the British
called it or the first national war of Indian Independence as characterised by
some early nationalist historians; whether it was a spontaneous outburst of
sepoy discontent or an organised and premeditated revolt; whether it was
limited to the army or was it a popular rebellion. In the end, it can be said that
the revolt of 1857 was the first and the most severe outburst of anger and
discontent accumulated in the hearts of Indian people ever since the advent of
Britishers following the Battles of Plassey and Buxar. Though the apologists
of imperialism dubbed it as a ‘Sepoy Mutiny’, the Indian historians have
praised it as the ‘First War of Indian Independence’. In the words of Nehru:
“It was much more than a military mutiny and it rapidly spread and assumed
the character of a popular rebellion and a war of Indian independence.”
Wahabi Movement
Appearance of Wahabism in India in the early 19th century as a religio-
political movement. In its religious aspect, it was a reform movement to
remove the religious corruptions and abuses that had crept into Islamic
society in India. In its political aspect, it was a movement to revive and
restore Muslim power in India by bringing about the overthrow of the British.
    Founder in India by Ahamad       of Bareilly in 1820, it began in Rohilkhand