"Horrific brutality of British rule" is a little over the top, though undoubtedly there were horrific elements, and there were brutal people involved.
Banco, yes I apologize for being a little too colourful. But I completely disagree that British rule had any redeeming features whatsoever, other than that it gave us a headstart on English (yes, we badly mangled it, unfortunately, but we gave you chicken tikka, which unfortunately, you ruined by adding a 'masala').
The British weren't the kind of out-and-out killers that, say, the Japanese were in east Asia. That's one of the primary reasons why India could be ruled by so few British, and in fact you even had local support. The primary means by which we suffered was because our economy was controlled and its back broken, which caused us to miss the bus of the industrial revolution.
Tariffs, a ban on industrial development, and generally being constrained to be an exporter of (discounted) raw material is a recipe for the drain of national wealth, which is precisely what happened. That much is undeniable. The recipes of economic development are often counterintuitive, and by the time the effects of a forced regressive economic regimen are realized, its often too late, as we found.
It took us decades after independence to stutter along the path of building the industrial infrastructure we needed to rise again. Pre-independence India was characterized by successive famines that cumulatively killed tens of millions. Post-independence, for all our misguided economic policies, there has not been a single famine, while even China hit a manmade disaster in the Cultural Revolution.
Statements about the British having build infrastructure would be amusing if they weren't so insulting. We're supposed to be thankful for a few strips of rail from the local coalmines to the ports, when we were ourselves banned from using it, or made to travel in 4th class compartments packed like sardines. India's infrastructure is several order of magnitude larger than it was when the British left.
Add to that the additional laughable claims that the British brought democracy or united India. Sure they set up the institutions that define today's definition of a democratic nation state, but the ideas of democracy and nation states are themselves extremely recent phenomenons, and its arguable India would not have developed on the same lines independently. In any case, the British did not set up a democratic framework. We built it out of the skeleton of the framework they set up to rule their empire. Post independence, several nations have stuttered through dictatorship, while we have preserved and sustained the biggest and most diverse experiment in democracy on the planet.
: just so my post isn't entirely off topic - the title of UNSG
is a joke. Dag Hammaskjold was about the only person who kept it to the stature it was envisioned. Since then, there have been nothing more than a string of competent men who have been forced to become lame ducks to the constraints of the existing UN system.