Describe the main features of the Permanent Settlement.

In order to get a stable revenue income, most of the East India Company’s officials believed that investment in land had to be encouraged and agriculture had to be improved. Debates on how this was to be done led to the introduction of the Permanent Settlement in 1793. The aim of this settlement was to ensure a regular flow of revenue for the Company. As per the settlement, rajas and taluqdars were recognised as zamindars. They were asked to collect rent from the peasants and pay revenue to the Company. The amount to be paid was fixed permanently and it was not to be increased ever in the future. The Company believed that as the revenue amount was fixed, the zamindars would benefit by investing in land improvement, which would in turn lead to increased production. If the zamindars failed to pay the revenue, which they usually did as the fixed revenue was very high, they lost their zamindari.

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