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Eden, Sir Ashley


Eden, Sir Ashley (1831-1887) Lieutenant Governor of Bengal (1877-82). Born on 13 November 1831 and educated at Rugby, Winchester and haileybury, Ashley Eden arrived in Calcutta in 1852. He was a nephew of lord auckland, Governor General of India (1836-42).

In his Bengal career Eden made his maiden mark in suppressing the santal rebellion, 1855. He served in many capacities at district and central levels before he became the Secretary to the Government of Bengal (1860-71). He served as Chief Commissioner of British Burma (1871-1877) immediately before he became the Lieutenant Governor of Bengal.

The main marks of Eden's administration were the famine (1877), Bengal License Act (1878) providing for the levy of a license fee on trades and industries, separation of the Civil Service into executive and judicial branches (1878), introduction of steam tramway in Darjeeling, extension of railway lines, rent commission (1880), reorganisation of Education Department, establishment of the Engineering College at Sibpur (1878), remaining the 'Dhaka Female School' after him (Eden Girls' School, then eden girls' college), 1878, vernacular press act (1878), new Bengal Secretariat in Writers' Buildings and initiatives in strengthening local self-government.

Ashley Eden was honoured with CSI in 1874 and KCSI in 1878. On retirement he joined the India Council in 1882 as a member and served there until his death on 8 July 1887. [Sirajul Islam]