Indian Political Service
The IPS was sometimes characterised as civil servants who didn't want to work and soldiers who didn't want to fight.
This Department was directly under the control of the Viceroy.
- 1783 Established
- 1843 became Foreign Department
- 1914 becane Foreign and Political Department
- 1937 became Indian Political Service
The Foreign and Political Department did many things: it was chiefly concerned with indirect rule, for much of British India consisted of the Princely States, presided over by their hereditary rulers, advised by a British Resident belonging to the Department – “a political”.
Next, the Department housed the officers of British India’s diplomatic service – its emissaries to Kabul, the Gulf and other areas.
Finally, it hosted “the politicals” of Balochistan and the North West Frontier Province – the officers who had chosen to make their careers in the frontier districts. The latter came about because when the NWFP was separated from the Punjab in 1901, the then Viceroy Curzon made sure the new Province was directly under his control.
Members of the Foreign and Political Department were sometimes known as The Twice Born, a progression of the terminology sometimes used in respect of members the Indian Civil Service, The Heaven-Born.
- Chapter 4 "Not Quite Soft Power: The Politicals", page 61, An Historical Analysis of the ‘Incessant Disputes in the Tribal Areas’ (of the North-West Frontier) against the British (and the British Indian Army) from 1893 to 1939 by Colonel Graeme Sligo, Australian Army October 2012. This paper was prepared for submission to the National Defence University (NDU) of Pakistan, where the author was a student in 2011-12. Australian Defence website
Historical books online
- For personal accounts, see Indian Civil Service - Historical books online - General
- "Not Quite Soft Power: The Politicals" by Colonel Graeme Sligo, refer External links above.
- Page 23 Thim Days Is Gone. Qatar Digital Library. A memoir written by Major Maurice Patrick O'Connor Tandy recounting his career, initially in the Royal Artillery in a Light Battery, and an Indian Mountain Battery in the early 1930s and then the Foreign and Political Department from October 1936.