On what ground was the ‘shoe respect’ rule insisted by Governor-General Amherst? To what extent is it justified to interfere in the personal matters of individuals? Give reasons for your answers.
On the following grounds the ‘Governor-General’ Amherst insisted the‘Shoe-respect’rule,
(i) It was a common practice of Indians that they took off their shoes when they entered a sacred place or home.
(ii) In 1824-1828, Governor-General Amherst insisted that Indians take off their shoes off as a sign of respect when they appeared before him. But this was not strictly followed.
(iii) By the mid- 19th century, under Lord Dalhousie the rule became stricter. Indians were made to take off their shoes when entering any government institution, but those who wore European outfits were exempted from this rule.
No, it was not justified because:
(i) Many Indian Government servants, who wore Indian clothes were uncomfortable with this rule.
(ii) In 1862, this rule was resisted by Manockjee Cowasjee Entee while he was barred entry into the courtroom where he worked. The judge insisted that he take off his shoes as that was the Indian way of showing respect to superiors.
(iii) The main intention of the British Government was to discriminate between an Indian and European. Further, they even tried to discriminate between the Indians who wore Indian clothes and those who wore European outfits.
(iv) This restriction can affect the freedom of choice about what one should wear.