(Original post by .paak)
You may be right but you're going to have to provide some source or this is an empty statement. Besides I can hardly believe that they did anything to help out, there would undoubtedly be some sort of mutual benefit or a long or short term gain.
You can certainly see negatives in a great many things if you look hard enough. You could easily argue that educational provision essentially created economic gains as well as providing a governing class that could not be provided by White British people, even though the benefits were significant to the Indian population too.
You could, incidentally, make similar arguments about 19th century government policy in Great Britain. Was state-provided educational provision for economic growth, or was it a solely benevolent act to improve the population? Was the provision of welfare benevolent, or focused on reducing the burden of crime, begging and so on that indirectly affected the middle and upper classes?
I think in considering what the British state did in India we equally ignore looking at what the British state did in Britain. Let's not forget there were famines in the United Kingdom in the 18th and even 19th centuries - and the relief was barely much better than what was provided in overseas colonies. So too we had local populations driven from their land for economic reasons here, as well as cack-handed and essentially murderous suppression of political dissent as in the Peterloo Massacre. At least in the early history of the British involvement in India, both were pre-democratic societies where the state was essentially run for the interests of a ruling class, whose relationship with the peasant or proletarian class was essentially exploitative in a great many areas.
There are a few policies pursued, however, that do fit with being - so far as I can see - unquestionably benevolent measures: legislation against child marriage, legalisation of remarriage for Hindu widows and perhaps most famously the abolition of Sati.
The consistent idea was imperialism.
I think this is really being attaching a greater profundity and intellectual foundation to imperialism than is probably merited. Often the pioneers of imperialism were commercial entities: the East India Company, the Hudson Bay Company and so on were simply interested in commerce. Actual government rule often followed somewhat reluctantly.
If you're a king and you see the land of some other king that you can take over and benefit from, and then keep doing it, is that really an ideology or even a consistent idea? I'd say it's really just a transaction.
If anything, not doing it for some moral or political reason would probably be the more ideological move in that situation. There were some ideological imperialists - I do not deny that - but they were relatively few and came relatively late to the game. Cecil Rhodes is the one that instantly springs to mind.