DR Ambedkar IAS Academy

Lord Ripon the viceroy of India to pass the factory act: Important reforms and achievements

Lord Ripon was the man who worked for the betterment of native Indians and wanted to expand and improve the condition of education in the country. 

Lord Ripon (George Frederick Samuel Robinson, 1st Marquess of Ripon) was the viceroy of India under Gladstone’s rule.

Even though he is described as Gladstone agent in India, he has proven to be a libertarian and a good administrator.

When William Ewart Gladstone came into power as the Prime Minister of England after the elections of 1880 A.D.

The then Viceroy of India Lord Lytton resigned and Gladstone was appointed as the new viceroy of India.

About Lord Ripon

Lord Ripon was the second son of Prime Minister F.J.Robinson, born on October 24, 1827, and died on July 9, 1909.

He has taken many measures towards liberalizing the Indian administration. He was aimed at providing popular and political education to the Indians.

While in India, he introduced a legislature that would have granted native Indian more legal rights, including the rights of judges to judge Europeans in court.

In this effort, Ripon was supported by Florance Nightingale, who also supported him on his effort to get Bengal land tenancy bill which would improve the situation of the peasants.


Repeal of Vernacular Press Act: Lord Ripon opposed the Vernacular Press Act passed by Lord Lytton, in order to provide freedom to the newspapers published in vernacular languages.

The Factory Act: The first factory was passed by Lord Ripon. The act prohibited the working of children below seven years and a limited number of working hours for children below 12 years.

This Act also made provision of one hour break during the working period and four monthly holidays for the employment.

It was the first time that any British government official tried to improve the condition of working of labourers in factories.

Economic Reform: Lord Ripon was a follower of financial decentralization. He divided the sources of revenue into three categories i.e. Imperial, Provincial and Divided.

Local Self Government: The motto of local self-government was to train the Indians to manage their problems themselves.

Municipalities were already in existence but the body was headed by a municipal commissioner. Ripon’s wanted the chairperson to not be an official.

Educational Reform: Lord Ripon appointed an education commissioner under the chairmanship of Sir William Hunter to keep an eye on the noted improvements.

The commission emphasised towards working of the special responsibility of the state’s improvement and expansion of primary education.

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