A paper on the effect of colonial rule in India, comparing areas ruled directly by the British against the indirectly ruled ones:
This paper compares economic outcomes across areas in India which were under di- rect British colonial rule with areas which were under indirect colonial rule. Controlling for selective annexation using a specific policy rule, I find that areas which experienced direct rule have significantly lower levels of access to schools, health centers and roads in the post-colonial period. I find evidence that the quality of governance in the colonial period has a significant persistent effect on post-colonial outcomes.
A recent book on Colonial India had pointed out that the gdp per capita for the average Indian fell by over 50% during the colonial period, which also suggests that Colonial rule was not quite peaches and cream for the toiling masses. Of course, the Mughal era before colonial rule wasn’t particularly better. The Mughal’s spent their empire building huge tombs and palaces, and the British did practically the same, except on an island far away with their Indian wealth.
Read moreThe effect of Colonial rule in India