Princely states merger timeline

States that joined after independence

Between May 1947 and the transfer of power on 15 August 1947, the vast majority of 562 states signed Instruments of Accession. A few, however, held out.

  • Piploda, a small state in central India, acceded in March 1948.
  • Jodhpur state signed the Instrument of Accession on 11 Aug, 1947 and merged his state in Union of India.
  • Junagarh or Junagadhwas a princely state in Gujarat ruled by the Muslim Babi dynasty in India but with a majority hindu population, which acceded to the Dominion of Pakistan after the Partition of British India. Subsequently, the Union of India annexed Junagadh in 1948, legitimized through a plebiscite which held in same year.
  • State of Hyderabad - On 26 January 1950, India formally incorporated the state of Hyderabad into the Union of India and ended the rule of the Nizams.
  • Kashmir - At the time of the partition of India and the political integration of India, Hari Singh, the ruler of the state, wanted his state to remain independent. However, an attack by raiders from the neighbouring Northwest Frontier Province, supported by Pakistan, forced his hand. On 26 October 1947, Hari Singh acceded  to India in return for the Indian military support to Kashmir, to engage the Pakistan-supported forces.
  • Sikkim was a British dependency, with a status similar to that of the other princely states, and was therefore considered to be within the frontiers of India in the colonial period. On independence, however, the Chogyalof Sikkim resisted full integration into India. On 10 April 1975, the Sikkim Assembly passed a resolution calling for the state to be fully integrated into India. This resolution was endorsed by 97 percent of the vote in a referendum held on 14 April 1975, following which the Indian Parliament amended the constitution to admit Sikkim into India as its 22nd state.
  • Chandernagore - A plebiscite held in Chandernagore on 19 June 1949 resulted in a vote of 7,463 to 114 in favour of being integrated with India. It was ceded to India on 2 May 1950.
  • Yanam and Mahe - in 1954 demonstrations in Yanam and Mahe resulted in pro-merger groups assuming power.
  • Pondicherry and Karaikal  - A referendum in Pondicherry and Karaikal in October 1954 resulted in a vote in favour of merger, and on 1 November 1954, de facto control over all four enclaves was transferred to the Republic of India.
  • Dadra and Nagar Haveli -In July 1954, an uprising in Dadra and Nagar Haveli threw off Portuguese rule.
  • Goa - On 18 December 1961, following the collapse of an American attempt to find a negotiated solution, the Indian Army entered Portuguese India and defeated the Portuguese garrisons there.

The Merger Agreements between union of india & princely states

The Merger Agreements

The Merger Agreements required rulers to cede "full and exclusive jurisdiction and powers for and in relation to governance" of their state to the Dominion of India. In return for their agreement to entirely cede their states, it gave princes many guarantees.

  • A privy purse - Princes would receive an annual payment from the Indian government in the form of a privy purse as compensation for the surrender of their powers and the dissolution of their states.
  • Private property would be protected - While state property would be taken over, their private property would be protected, as would all personal privileges, dignities and titles. Succession was also guaranteed according to custom.

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