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If some maharajas accepted the notion that their right to rule depended in a measure upon performance and service, none conceded that it depended upon the support of organized public opinion. Some used means to consult public opinion, such as great annual durbars (royal public audiences), to inform themselves and their governments of public grievances and aspirations, but none entertained the notion of reigning rather than ruling by transforming the state into a democratic constitutional monarchy. Only toward the end of World War II, when the s