March 16, 1846
1 The text of the treaty
2 Letter of Governor-General to Gulab Singh. January 7, 1848
3 Lawrence to Jawala Sahai. January 14, 1852
4 Governor-General to Gulab Singh. September 26, 1873
5 Officer n Special Duty to Foreign Secretary. December 9, 1882
6 Government of India to the Secretary of State for India. April 7, 1884
7 The Secretary to State for India to The Government of India. May 23, 1884
8 The Secretary of State to the Government of India. August 1, 1884
9 Kharita from the viceroy to the Maharaja of Jammu & Kashmir. September 14, 1885
10 Resident in Kashmir to Secretary to the Government of India. September 16, 1885
11 From Partap Singh to the Viceroy. September 18, 1885
12 Durbar Proclamation. September 25, 1885
13 Partap Singh’s Address in Durbar. September 25, 1885
14 Partap Singh’s Address in Durbar. October 19, 1885
15 The Indian Mirror. October 5, 1886
16 Report on the affairs of the State of Jammu & Kashmir by the Resident of Kashmir. March 5, 1888
17 Kharita from Partap Singh to the Viceroy. April 13, 1888
18 Kharita from Partap Singh to the Viceroy. July 25, 1888
19 Kharita from Viceroy to Maharaja Partap Singh. July 25, 1888
20 Government of India to the Secretary of State. August 18, 1888
21 Secretary of State to the Government of India. October 12, 1888
22 Secretary of State to the Government of India. February 17, 1889
23 Irshad of Maharaja Partap Singh, Edict of Abdication. March 8, 1889
24 Irshad of Maharaja Partap Singh, Edict of Abdication. March 13, 1889
25 Instruction from the Government of India to the Resident in Kashmir. April 1, 1889
26 From the Resident in Kashmir to Raja Amar Singh, Prime Minister, Kashmir. April 17, 1889
27 Lord Lansdowne to Maharaja of Kashmir,Letter from Digby to London Times. September 7, 1889
28 Constitution of the State Council. 1889
29 Administration of Justice in Kashmir State, Note by Bhag Ram, Judicial Member of the Council. November 18, 1889
30 Kashmir under the British Administration. January 30, 1890
31 Resident to Amar Singh. April 27, 1891
32 State Council Supplementary Rules of business. September 5, 1896
33 State Council Supplementary Rules of business. November 5, 1899
34 Restoration of Powers to Maharaja Pratap Singh. 1905
35 New Arrangements for the Administration of Kashmir by Resident in Kashmir. May 1906
36 Transactions of Business of the Council Memorandum Maharaja Pratap Singh. 1906
37 Letter from Chief Minister Jammu and Kashmir State to Maharaja Pratap Singh. July 2,1919
38 Regulation No. XLVI Jammu and Kashmir State Civil Courts Regulation. 1921
39 Sri Pratap Reforms Regulation Reserved Subjects. 1922
40 Sri Pratap Reforms Regulation No. IV of 1922
41 High Court Code of Civil Procedure
42 Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir State Council. 1924
Treaty of Amritsar (1846)
The text of the treaty
The treaty between the British Government on the one part and Maharajah Gulab Singh of Jammu on the other concluded on the part of the British Government by Frederick Currie, Esq. and Brevet-Major Henry Montgomery Lawrence, acting under the orders of the Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Hardinge, G.C.B., one of her Britannic Majesty’s most Honorable Privy Council, Governor-General of the possessions of the East India Company, to direct and control all the affairs in the East Indies and by Maharajah Gulab Singh in person – 1846.
Article 1 The British Government transfers and makes over for ever in independent possession to Maharajah Gulab Singh and the heirs male of his body all the hilly or mountainous country with its dependencies situated to the eastward of the River Indus and the westward of the River Ravi including Chamba and excluding Lahol, being part of the territories ceded to the British Government by the Lahore State according to the provisions of Article IV of the Treaty of Lahore, dated 9th March, 1846.
Article 2 The eastern boundary of the tract transferred by the foregoing article to Maharajah Gulab Singh shall be laid down by the Commissioners appointed by the British Government and Maharajah Gulab Singh respectively for that purpose and shall be defined in a separate engagement after survey.
Article 3 In consideration of the transfer made to him and his heirs by the provisions of the foregoing article Maharajah Gulab Singh will pay to the British Government the sum of seventy-five lakhs of rupees (Nanukshahee), fifty lakhs to be paid on or before the 1st October of the current year, A.D., 1846.
Article 4 The limits of territories of Maharajah Gulab Singh shall not be at any time changed without concurrence of the British Government.
Article 5 Maharajah Gulab Singh will refer to the arbitration of the British Government any disputes or question that may arise between himself and the Government of Lahore or any other neighboring State, and will abide by the decision of the British Government.
Article 6 Maharajah Gulab Singh engages for himself and heirs to join, with the whole of his Military Forces, the British troops when employed within the hills or in the territories adjoining his possessions.
Article 7 Maharajah Gulab Singh engages never to take to retain in his service any British subject nor the subject of any European or American State without the consent of the British Governnent.
Article 8 Maharajah Gulab Singh engages to respect in regard to the territory transferred to him, the provisions of Articles V, VI and VII of the separate Engagement between the British Government and the Lahore Durbar, dated 11th March, 1846.
Article 9 The British Government will give its aid to Maharajah Gulab Singh in protecting his territories from external enemies.
Article 10 Maharajah Gulab Singh acknowledges the supremacy of the British Government and will in token of such supremacy present annually to the British Government one horse, twelve shawl goats of approved breed (six male and six female) and three pairs of Cashmere shawls. This Treaty of ten articles has been this day settled by Frederick Currie, Esq. and Brever-Major Henry Montgomery Lawrence, acting under directions of the Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Hardinge, Governor-General, on the part of the British Government and by Maharajah Gulab Singh in person, and the said Treaty has been this day ratified by the seal of the Rt. Hon. Sir Henry Hardinge, Governor-General. Done at Amritsar the sixteenth day of March, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty-six, corresponding with the seventeenth day of Rubee-ul-Awal (1262 Hijri).
(Signed) H. Hardinge (Seal) (Signed) F. Currie (Signed) H. M. Lawrence
Letter of Governor-General to Gulab Singh. January 7, 1848
Your Highness is aware of the principle by which the British Government is guided in its treaties with Eastern Princies where cessions of territory are involved that whilst it will scrupulously fulfill all its obligations for the protection of its ally, it never can consent to incur the reproach of becoming indirectly instrument of the oppression of the people committed to the Prince’s charge. If the aversion of the people to a Prince’s rule should by his injustice become so miserable as to cause the people to seek his downfall, the British Government are bound by no obligation to force the people to submit to a ruler who has derived himself of their allegiance by his misconduct. In no case, will the British Government be the blind instrument of a Ruler’s injustice towards his people and if in spite of friendly warnings, the evil of which the British Government may have just cause to complain be not corrected, a system of direct interference must be resorted to which as Your Highness must be aware would lower the dignity and curtail the independence of the Ruler.
Lawrence to Jawala Sahai. January 14, 1852
On account of certain excesses committed by some European Visitors in the past year, I intend to appoint some responsible European official at Srinagar to stay there till the return of the said visitors in order that he may put a stop to the occurance of such excesses. As the Maharaja is well acquainted with the good intentions and sociability of Major MacGregor, I wish he may be allowed to stay at Srinagar till the end of the hot season to supervise the conduct of European visitors to Kashmir. As this arrangement is also for the benefit of High Highness, it is hoped that it will be gladly accepted by High Highness.
Governor-General to Gulab Singh. September 26, 1873
In view of the important position of Your Highness’s territories on the north-western frontiers of British India, the increasing importance attached to political affairs in Central Asia, the necessity of obtaining early and reliable information of all that takes place beyond the Himalayan passes, the mischief caused by the circulation of false and exaggerated rumours from those quarters, and the close relations which will, His Excellency in Council trusts. be established with Yarkand, it appears to His Excellency in Council to be advisible that a British Resident should remain permanently at the Court of Your Highness. This alteration of the present arrangements is made for reasons relating to the external relations of British India, and the Viceroy has no intention of interfering more than heretofore in the internal affairs of Kashmere.
Officer n Special Duty to Foreign Secretary. December 9, 1882
It may not be worth while to alter the designation of the Officer on Special Duty, though his present designation is cumbrous and absurd. His duties are not special but the ordinary duties of an Agent or a ‘Charge d’Affairs’. But there is no magic in the word ‘Resident’. Whatever the Maharaja may think, and I am not aware that the powers of a Resident as such are anywhere strictly defined, they would probably vary with the degree of control exercised by the Paramount power. I myself am of the opinion that ‘Agent to the Governor-General’ would be more appropriate designation and one less likely to terrify the Maharaja and as High Highness has a Vakil or Agent with the Governor-General he would hardly be astonished that the Governor-General should have a Vakil or Agent with him. No matter what the Officer is called, his position should be strengthened, in justice to him and to the Darbar.
Government of India to the Secretary of State for India. April 7, 1884
The three principal facts which it is necessary to notice are that the death of the Maharaja Ranbir Singh is apparantely near at hand; that the administration of the Kashmir State is so thoroughly disorganised as to threaten a complete breakdown; and that the heir-apparent to the Chiefship is said to be unfitted in character and habits to govern the State. The first two of these facts we have unfortunately been in a position to anticipate for a long time past. The Maharaja has been suffering for years from a moral disease; while the recent famine afforded convincing proof of the corruptness and inefficiency of the administration of Kashmir. We have also heard from time to time unsatisfactory accounts of the heir-apparent, and it has of late been reported that his father entertained some idea of setting him aside by a testamentary disposition. In our judgment, the time has now come for determining the course which the British Government should adopt on the death of the Maharaja; and we therefore proceed to lay our views before your Lordship. Turning first to the question of the succession to the present Chief, we are of opinion that the eldest son, Mian Pertab Singh, should be proclaimed at once when his father die. We do not consider that we can take congizance of the vices attributed to Pertab Singh unless they have reduced him to a condition of actual incapacity which does not appear to be the case; nor do we think that in this matter we should be justified in attaching any weight even to the wishes of His Highness Ranbir Singh. For the general interests of peace and good order among the Native States, no encouragement should be given to the idea that an eldest son can be set aside at the with of his father; and we hold that in practice nothing but the clearest evidence of actual incapacity to rule should be allowed: to stand in the way of a regular succession by order of primogeniture. Further we are entirely opposed to permitting any partition of the Kashmir State, by will or otherwise, among the three sons of the present Chief. Feeling confident that our opinion upon hese points are in accord with established policy, we have anticipated your Lordship’s orders by issuing the instructions necessary for-the guidance of t Lieutenent-Colonel Sir Oliver St. John, K.B.C.I., the Officer on special Duty, ire case of an emergency arising. In the meanwhile we do not think it desirable formally to announce to the Maharaja that a will affecting the succession could not be recognised, because this course might raise unpleasant discussions. But the Officer on Special Duty will avail himself of any good opportunity for intimating to His Highness that such a will would not be expedient. On the succession of the new Chief, it will not, in our opinion, be proper to postpone any longer representation of our views upon the necessity for introducing substantial reforms into the administration of Kashmir. The misgovernment to which the people of that country have long been subjected was some time since prominently brought to our notice by Mr. Henvey. We did not take action at once, conceiving that a more favourable opportunity would present itself on the occurence of a fresh succession-an event which seemed unlikely to be long postponed. When that event takes place, we consider that it will be our duty to impress upon the Kashmir Government its obligations to its own subjects, and to see that the reforms which are so urgently needed are no longer postponed. With this view we would propose, immediately on the occurence of the next succession, to inform the Maharaja, that we regard the present state of affairs as most unsatisfactory and that substantial reforms are required. We would if possible lead the new Government to propose the measures necessary to give effect to this altered policy, but we should require that their execution should be entrusted to competent hands. While firmly insisting upon necessity for a change, we should avoid any direct interference with administrative details. We are, however, sensible that, if our advice is to be effectual, it may be necessary to alter the present arrangement under which our representative remains in the Maharaja’s territory for a portion only of the year. Such a change would probably be welcomed by the people of Kashmir; and as it would not be introduced until after the death of Maharaja Ranbir Singh, his feelings in the matter would be fully respected. It is a measure which may be called for, not merely by the need for assisting and supervising administrative reforms, but also by the increasing importance to the Government of India of watching events beyond the North-Western frontier of Kashmir. Any disturbances which continued misgovernment might create in Kashmir, would be actually felt on the frontiers of Afghanistan; the connection between Kashmir and its dependent Chiefships would in all probability be served; and grave political complications might easily ensue. We have therefore to consider the necessity for providing for efficient political supervision, not merely in the interests of the people of Kashmir, but also in the interests of the people of India. Under these circumstances we are anxious to obtain from Her Majesty’s Government authority to appoint, if it should appear to us necessary, at any time after the death of the present Maharaja, a Resident political officer, who will exercise a general supervision over the affairs of the Kashmir State. We do not propose that this officer if appointed by us, should hold any actual position in the government of the State, nor do we think that it would be necessary to give him special powers in the province of Kashmir. It will suffice if he occupies, with regard to Jammu and Kashmir, the position and powers ordinarily given to a British Resident in a feudatory State. he British Government are not debarred by any engagement express or tacit, from posting a political Officer permanently in Kashmir; and we see no reason why an arrangement which has been accepted without demur by such a State as Hyderabad should not be adopted in regard to the Kashmir State. If this view is correct, the only question which arises is, whether existing circumstances do not render it desirable to give us the authority we seek.
The Secretary to State for India to The Government of India. May 23, 1884
(Extract) (1) In anticipation of the death of Maharaja Ranbir Singh which is believed to be near at hand, your Excellency in Council has had under consideration (l) the course to be adopted in regard to the succession;
(2) the measures which should be taken on the commencement of a new reign, in order to secure reforms in the administration of the State; and (3) the expediency of a change in the existing arrangements for the representation of the British Government at the Maharaja’s Court.
(3) Your Excellency in Council is of opinion that any attempt on the part of the Maharaja to exclude his eldest son from the succession should be discouraged, and that Mian Pertab singh should be proclaimed immediately on his father’s death; you propose to require from the new ruler substantial reforms in the administration, and to insist upon their execution being entrusted to competent hands; and you request from Her Majesty’s Government discretionary authority to appoint, at any time after the death of Maharaja Ranbir Singh. a British Resident in Kashmir, with the position and powers ordinarily given to such an officer in a feudatory State.
(4) While I regret to receive so unfavourable an account of the character of the Maharaja’s heir, I agree with your Government in regarding as inexpendient any deviation in the case Excellency’s of Kashmir from the regular succession by order of primogeniture, or any partition of the State, by will or otherwise, among the three sons of the present Chief. I approve therefore, of the instructions in accordance with this view, which I understand to have been sent to the Officer on Special Duty in Kashmir.
(5) As to the urgent need of reforms in the administration of the State, there is, unfortunately, no room for doubt. It may, indeed, be a question whether, having regard to the circumstances under which the sovereignty of the Country was entrustd to the present Hindu ruling family, the intervention of the British Government on behalf of the Muhamadan population has not already been too long delayed; but, however this may be, Her Majesty’s Government are satisfied that’ upon a fresh succession, no time, should be lost in taking whatever steps may be requisite in order to place the administration upon a sound footing.
(6) The same occasion would, in the opinion of Her Majesty’s Government, be a suitable one for introducing a change in the present arrangement under which your Excellency’s representative remains in Kashmir for a portion only of the year.
(7) In 1845 it was decided not to appoint a political officer to reside permanently at the Maharaja’s Court, whilst in 1873, when the measure was recommended by Lord Northbrook’s Government, the necessity for it did not seem to Her Majesty’s Government to be so clearly established as to justify them in disregarding objections which were expressed by authorities entitled to respect. But in the interval which has since elapsed, circumstances have greatly changed; and whether regard be had to the condition of the country, to the character of the Prince into whose hands the Government will shortly pass, or to the course of events beyond the course of events beyond the border, which has materially increased the political importance of Kashmir, the appointment which you request a discretionary authority to make appears to be not only desirable but necessary. Your Excellency in Council Isis therefore, at liberty to proceed in the matter as you may think proper at any time after the death of Maharaja Ranbir Singh, taking care meanwhile that strict secrecy is observed as to your intentions.
The Secretary of State to the Government of India. August 1, 1884
(Extract) In case of Maharaja Ranbir Singh’s death, his eldest son, Mian Pertab Singh, will succeed to the undivided Chiefship the new Maharaja will be called upon to introduce such reforms as many seem to be necessary; and a Resident Political Officer will be stationed in Kashmir. It remains to inform you of the precise steps which the Governor-General in Council desires you to adopt for earring out these arrangements.
So long as Maharaja Ranbir Singh is alive, the Government of India do not propose to make any change in their exiting policy. His Highness should be quietly dissuaded, if he refers to you on the subject, from executing any testament in favour of the partition of his territories; but it will not be necessary for you to make any formal communication to His Highness upon this matter, or to travel beyond existing practice in recommending to him administrative reforms, or other desirable measures. You should abstain from any allusions to the subject of changes in the existing position of the officer on special Duty in Kashmir, and you should avoid as much as possible – anything which is calculated in the Maharaja’s present state of health unnecessarily to disturb his mind. It is of course desirable that you should use your influence, as far as you can, even during the life of the Maharaja, for the improvement of tile condition of Kashmir; but the Governor-General in council wishes to treat His Highness with the utmost consideration and, as any substantial reform would probably involve a very unpalatable degree of interference with his proceeding, it will be sufficient if, during the remainder of his life, you can perserve the administration of the State from any material change for the worse.
If at any time Maharaja’s death should appear to be very near at hand, you should make arrangements to join His Highness at Jammu, or wherever he may then be, and to prevent, by disorder occurring. If his illness should unfortunately terminate fatally, you should take the earliest opportunity of announcing that the Viceroy is pleased to recognize the succession of Mian Pertab Singh to the Chiefship, and you should formally install the new Chief on the gadi of Jammu and Kashmir. At the same time you should inform His Highness, and the members of his Durbar, of the views and intentions of the British Government in regard to the future administration of the State. You should give them clearly to understand that His Excellency the Viceroy regards the existing conditions of affairs in Kashmir as most unsatisfactory; and you should warn His Highness and those about him that substantial reforms must be introduced without delay. You should then announce that, with the view of aiding His Highness in the introduction and maintenance of those reforms, the Viceroy has decided to give His Highness the assistance of a resident English officer, and that for the future the British representative in Kahmir will have the same status and duties as the Political Residents in other Indian States in subordinate alliance with the British Government.
It is important, in order to avoid uncertainty and the risk of disorder, that this announcement of the intentions of the Government should take place without delay, and that they should clearly and fully understood both by the Maharaja and by all others concerned when he is installed. The recognition and installation of the new Chief should be as prompt and formal as posssible, and nothing should be omitted that can have the effect of assuring His Highness of the good-will of the British Government, but, while treating the Maharaja with utmost friendliness and courtesy, you cannot speak too plainly in regard to the Viceroy’s views and intentions.
Immediately after the news of Maharaja Ranbir Singh’s death reaches the Government of India, a letter addressed by His Excellency the Viceroy to the new chief will be sent to you for delivery. A draft of this letter is enclosed for your information. When you receive the signed copy of this draft or before you receive it, if the ceremonies connected with the change of rulers should afford you an opportunity of speaking earlier, you should invite the Maharaja to indicate the reforms which he may consider it necessary or desirable to introduce; and you should ask His Highness to inform you of his views with regard to the persons whom he would propose to place in charge of the administration. It will not be expedient to bring in a Minister from elsewhere if a sufficiently well qualified local candidate can be found; and as far as possible the Governor-General in Council would wish to leave the Maharaja free to form own Government. Any proposals, therefore, which His Highness may put forward on this subject will be tentatively accepted, unless you should see decided reason to object to them as holding out no prospect of success.
You will notice that the draft letter to the Maharaja impresses upon him the necessity for consulting you fully at all times, and following your advice. You should therefore not hesitate to offer your advice freely whenever N’OU may think it desirable to do so; the more particularly because owing to the peculiar conditions under which the Maharaja will succeed to the Chiefship, it will be necessary that his administration should for a time at least be closely supervised; the condition of Kashmir must be thoroughly reformed, and the Governor-General in Council cannot allow this object to tee frustrated by any obstruction or procrastination on the part of the Durbar. I am now to enumerate, for your information and guidance, the principal measures of reform which appear to the Governor-General in Council to be necessary after any arrangements required for the immediate alleviation of distress, if distress exist, have been adopted and carried out. In the opinion of the Governor-General in Council those measures are: the introduction of a reasonably light assessment of land revenue, collections being made in cash if on examination this seems to be a suitable arrangement; the construction of good roads; the cessation of State monopolies; the revision of existing taxes and dues, especially transit dues and the numerous taxes upon trades and professions; the abolition of the system of farming the revenue, wherever the system is in force; the appointment of respectable officials, if such exist, and their regular payment in coin; the removal of all restrictions upon emigration; the reorganization and regular payment of the army; and the improvement of the judicial administration. In order to afford the Maharaja all possible help in the introduction of such reforms, the Governor-General in Council will if necessary grant High Highness a loan from Imperial revenues, and will also be willing to place at his disposal, for a time, the services of any officers of the British Government who may seem specially qualified to assist the new administration in carrying out the measures contemplated. Such assistance seems to be more particularly required with regard to the revision of the settlement and the construction of roads. The pay of any officers transferred must, however, be found by the Kashmir State. With reference to the relations existing between Kashmir and the State upon her northern border, the Governor-General in Council does not think it necessary at present to issue any detailed instructions. The question is an important one, and will require your close and constant attention. You should be kept accurately informed of all movements of troops and other noteworthy occurances in the direction of the frontier, and you should be prepared to advise Maharaja Pratap Singh freely on all matters of frontier policy. But at present the Governor-General in Council has no special instruction to give you on this subject.
Kharita from the viceroy to the Maharaja of Jammu & Kashmir. September 14, 1885
(Extract) I have received with deep regret the news of the death of your father, Maharaja Ranbir Singh and I wish to assure you without delay of my most sincere sympathy. Maharaja Ranbir Singh rendered valuable service to the British Government. I feel that his loss is the loss of a friend and I wish that it had not fallen to me during the period of my Viceroyalty, to consider the measures rendered necessary by this unfortunate event. It is now my duty to inform you, on behalf of the Queen Empress of India, that I recognise and confirm your succession to the Chiefship of Jammu and Kashmir. I trust that your Highness’s life may be long and prosperous; and that, in all difficulties, of whatsoever kind, you will rely with confidence upon the good-will of the British Government, which will never fail you so long as you are loyal to the Crown and earnest in the desire to rule your State with justice and moderation. Your Highness has before you a difficult task. During the illness of your father the administration of the State became seriously disorganised and it will be necessary for you to introduce many reforms. But my agent, Sir Oliver St. John, will remain with you and help you to the utmost of his ability; and I feel confident that with his aid all your difficulties will be successfully met and overcome. I request your Highness to refer to him for a more detailed explanation of my views regarding the future administration of the Kashmir State; and I hope that your Highness will not fail to consult him freely at all times, and to be guided by his advice in carrying those views into execution
Resident in Kashmir to Secretary to the Government of India. September 16, 1885
(Extract) I have the honour to report my arrival here yesterday morning, my journey having been much delayed by the bad state of the road. At Verinag, late at night on the 12th, I received a telegram from Mian Pertab Singh, the heir-apparent, informing me of the death of his father, Maharaja Ranbir Singh at 4.30 p.m. that day.
The state of affairs seem to be somewhat as follows : The death of Wazir Punnu (who fell down dead in Durbar On the 6th instant) was a stroke of extraordinary good fortune for the opposite party, represented by Diwan Anant Ram and Babu Nilambar. It not only removed their most powerful adversary, and the man who had the greatest influence with the present as with the late Maharaja, but it also keeps the country quiet without any effort on their part. The name of Punnu was a byeword and a reproach among the people, and all the tyranny and oppression from which they suffered was invariably laid to his door, not always with justice. Had he survived his old master, he would have been the leading spirit in the Councils of the new Chief, and the people, hopeless of improvement, would probably have made rebellious Demonstrations, which with an army eighteen months in arrears of pay, would not have been easy to suppress. But Punnu died six days before Pertab Singh succeeded to the Chiefship, and the people, overjoyed at their deliverance from the man whom they believed their sole tyrant, are probably indifferent to the change of rulers, and will remain quite in confident anticipation of early relief from their burdens. Another fortunate circumstance for the new Chief is the general prosperity of the country, as far as it can be prosperous. under such a Government. The late spring rains caused someloss in the low country and the outer hills, as did the summer floods in Kashmir, but the agricultural out-turn for the last year has everywhere been exceptionally high, and the prospects of the crops now in the ground are excellent. Commerce is shown by the Punjab trade reports to be steadily improving inspite of the vexatious restrictions placed on it. Thus, as. far as the country itself is concerned, Maharaja Partab Singh and his councillors have everything in their favour. At present he is looking for advice to Babu Nilambar and Diwan Anant Ram. The first is clever and well-intentioned but deficient in force of character. The Diwan is perhaps well meaning but his bringing up inclines him to lean to the old way of managing the country, and he is weak and cunning. They are, I fear, wholly unable to cope with the difficulties which will meet them in improving the administration, should they make any real effort to do so. Certain simple reforms, such the abolition of obnoxious imports and export dues and the more regular payment of officials, they may effect, but it wills I fear, be hopeless to look for any serious improvement in the administration generality, without constant and heavy pressure, and material interference in details. A probably early source of trouble will be the influence possessed over the new Maharaja by his personal followers. These, who are mostly men of the lowest class, are already beginning to assert themselves, and to offer to help their friends to lucrative employment. it can hardly belong before they and the party of Nilambar and Anant Ram come into conflict. The later will not have the courage to lean on the Resident, and govern as Salar Jang did in Hyderabad in spite of the Chief, but will try to trim with the usual consequences. On these points I will write more fully as the situation develops itself. For the present I have only pointed out to Anant Ram and Nilambar the urgent necessity for paying the troops and for relieving the export trade of the country from its burdens. They will not, or cannot give me any information of the actual state of the finance, except that the public treasury is practically empty. I have every reason to believe, however, that the late Maharaja regularly diverted the revenue of certain districts to his private chest. Some of this was devoted to religious purposes, but popular report has it that he has left large sums hoarded in obscure forts in different parts of the country. It is also said that he solemnly enjoined that this money should – never be used to meet the current expenditure of the State, and no doubt, if it exists, every effort will be made to keep it intact, or at all events to spend it on no useful object. The annual customs contract expires in the course of a month or two, and this will be a favourable opportunity for a revision of the tariff, which should entirely free the woollen and metal trades of Kashmir from the heavy export duties to which they are now subject. This will give an impulse to production in Srinagar, which should tide the artisan class over the w inter, of which the prospects are exceptionally bad owing to the final collapse of the shawl trade in Europe, and the paucity of visitors in the valley this year.
From Partap Singh to the Viceroy. September 18, 1885
(Extract) I have also to present my greatful thanks to your Excellency for the most welcome message conveyed to me on the 15th instant by Colonel Sir Oliver St. John, the Officer on special Duty in Kashmir7 that your Excellency has been pleased to recognise my succession to the gadi of this State, and I hose by the blessing of God to let Your Excellency have the satisfaction of learning before long that I am as fully alive to the undoubted and immense importance of conscientiously discharging my duties towards my subjects by doing all in my power to secure their best happiness, as 1 am awake to the supremely important duty of giving renewed proofs of loyalty to the British Government by following in the footsteps of my father and grandfather. I do not hesitate to admit that the existing state of affairs in Kashmir and Jammu urgently requires immediate introduction of substantial reforms into the administration of the country, and now that I have power commensurate with my responsibilities, 1 beg to assure your Excellency that nothing shall be spared on my part, and no time will be lost to prove beyond any possibility of doubt that it is my ambition to succeed in making nay country a model of a well-governed State in alliance with the Government of India. It has, however, pained me extremely to learn that exactly at the time when I have made up my mind to deserve and win your Excellency’s approbation and encouragement by proving myself equal to the onerous and responsible duties of a good ruler, your Excellency has been thinking of changing the status of the British officer on special Duty in Kashmir to that of a political Resident, and thus lowering me in the eyes of my subjects and in the estimation of the public. It is fully known to your Excellency that I have only just now acquired the power of showing to the world that, without any interference from any quarter or any, the smallest, diminution of long enjoyed rights and dignity of this State, I am able and willing of my own accord to introduce and maintain such reforms as are calculated to entitle a rulers to the lasting gratitude of his subjects, and encouraging approbation of the paramount power as well as the public at large.
Durbar Proclamation. September 25, 1885
(Extract) (l) The custom of “khodkasht’`. This is a system by which the State farms a part of the village lands itself. Advances are annually made to the persons employed for the purpose, but it is notorious that they embezzle the money, and cultivate the land with forced labour, and seed extorted from the villagers.
(2) The custom of “leri”. This is a system of paying sepoys and others by remission of rent, instead of in coin and, for some reason not easily explained, is much disliked.
(3) Each group of ten houses in Jammu territory will no longer as before, be obliged to supply one Sepoy or other Government servant; forcible enlistment generally is abolished; and the role of obliging families to provide substitutes for deserters in done away with.
(4) The customs duty on rice and other provisions brought into Srinagar for sale is reduced from two annas in the rupee to half an anna, in other words from 12 1/2 to 3 l/8 per cent.
To understand the severity of this tax it must be explained that Government itself is the principal grain dealer, and fixes a permanent rate at whicl1 grain is sold. Thus the rate for unhusked rice in Re. 1-4 (English) per kharwar, equivalent to about 10 annas a man. If a Zemindar sends rice to market, he can ask no more for it than 10 annas a man, and has in addition to pay the customs contractor l l/4 Anna before he can offer it for sale. Under these conditions it is clear that the remission of three-fourths of this tax will benefit the producer, and not the ccr.sun or, who will pay the some price for his rice as before.
(5) The next impost remitted is also in favour of Zeminder. Every large village community in Kashmir comprises a “Zillahdar,” or “Harkara,” whose business it is to report the misdeeds of his fellows. The Durbar affect to look on these officials as rural police; but as they are occasionally women, and have no powers beyond reporting, spies would be a better name for them. They are paid by a cess of I 1/2 per cent on the gross produce of the land. Some years ago it occurred to Wazir Punna that the Zillahdars were making too much money, and he therefore made their chief, the Harkara-Bashi (head-bringer of news) pay an annual sum to the treasury. This has been raised till it now amounts to 60,000 Chilki rupees (37,500 English) a great deal more than the estimated total value of the cess from which it is supposed to be paid. This most obnoxious impost is now abolished, but the Zillahdars are warned that they must continue to send in reports, and that if found extorting any thing beyond the legitimate 1 112 per cent they will be punished.
(6) The tax on the sale of horses in Kashmir, called “Zari-nakas”, which at one time amounted to 50 per cent of the purchase money, is abolished.
(7) The tax on “Ekhas” playing for hire to Sailkot, which amounted to Re. 1-11 on a total of Rs. 2-10 annas is abolished, and some other minor dues are remitted.
Partap Singh’s Address in Durbar. September 25, 1885
(Extract) SIR OLIVER ST. JOHN, SARDARS AND GENTLEMEN. (1) My hearty and cordial thanks are due to his Excellency the Viceroy, and his worthy representative and my sincere friend, Sir Oliver St. John, for the kharita recognising my succession to the Chiefship of this large and important State, and I take this fitting opportunity to declare publicly, that of the many ardous and responsible duties which I shall have to perform as the ruler of this State, the foremost under all circumstances will be the duty of following in the footsteps of fray illustrious grand father and the lamented Highness, in giving substantial proofs of unswerving and devoted loyalty to Her Imperial Majesty’s Government, and, when the necessity will arise, of placing all the resources of my country at the disposal of His Excellency the Viceroy and of personally joining the British army with the whole of my military force.
(2) Next in importance to my obligations to the paramount power, but next to those only, will be the duty of governing my country with justice and moderation. The responsibilities which I an; going to undertake will be high and heavy indeed, but 1 believe God will grant me firmness and strength enough to discharge them witl1 credit to the family of my renowned ancestors, and benefit to the lakhs of subjects whom it has pleased providence to place under my care.
(3) I have before me the difficult task of introducing substantial reforms in the administration of the country, but I believe I have only to look the difficulties boldly in the face and show a determined front, to achieve complete success and earn the reputation of a just and good ruler. Armed with purity of intentions and firmness of purpose, I may reasonably entertain the hope of being able to clear the administrative agency of all corruption and incompetency, and impart to it the maximum of honesty and efficiency. I now warn my officials of all ranks that I have fully made up my mind to put down corruption and intrigue wherever they may be found, and I hope they will do all in their power to help me in making administration a blessing and a source of unmixed good to my people.
(4) I know that the paramount power as well as the public will watch with interest the progress and development of my measures of reform, and I am fully alive to the fact that they will estimate me not by the pomp and splendour of my court and retinue, but by the amount of happines, that I may secure to my subjects.
(5) I need not trouble you now with minute details of what I intend to do, but I think I can declare without committing myself to any particular measure the policy and the general principles that will guide me in the conduct of my affairs. I shall adopt such measure only as are calculated to secure to my subjects their greatest good and the fullest enjoyment of their rights and privileges, and shall conduct my administration so that the tiller of the soil will enjoy a fair share of the produce of his labour and the manufacturer of his skill and industry, that every facility will be given to commerce by improving the means of communication and removing unnecessary and vexatious restrictions, that every encouragement will be offered to get all the resources of the country properly developed, that adequate measures will be taken to give my subjects the benefits of sound and useful education, that ample provision will be made for the relief of the sick and the suffering, and that real merit and worth in my subjects will be recognised and fostered without any distinction of race or rank, creed or colour.
Partap Singh’s Address in Durbar. October 19, 1885
(Extract) The demise of the late Maharaja Ranbir Singh was announced to your Lordship by telegram on the 12th September and the papers now enclosed will acquaint Her Majesty’s Government with the steps we have taken to carry out the policy approved by Lord Kimberley’s despatch, dated the 23rd May 1884. The succesion of Pertab Singh, the eldest son of the deceased Maharaja, to the undivided Chiefship of Janice and Kashmir has been recognised and confirmed. The position of political officer in Kashmir has been placed on the same footing with that of Residents in other Indian States in subordinate alliance with the Government. The attention of the new ruler has been drawn to certain measures of reforms which we consider essential to remedy the longstanding misrule in His Highness’s territories. At the same tirade Maharaja has been assured that we desire to leave The initiation of these measures in his hands, to abstain from unnecessary interference in his affairs, and to allow him all legitimate discretion and a liberal period of time for the execution of a work which is as difficult as it is necessary.
The Indian Mirror. October 5, 1886
The settlement of the Anglo-Indian-Cashmere means, in our opinion, the practical annexation of that State to the British Empire and as the presence of the Bangal is not very favourable to the quiet development of this scheme of annexation, their immediate departure and future exclusion from that State have really become a necessity of the situation … we do not know how far the Maharaja is to blame in respect to this affairs. Our own apprehension is that much pressure has been brought to bear on His Highness to compel the resignation of the Bengali officer in his State. These Bengalis are always thorn on the side of the foreign office and the officers of the political department and as the foreign office is evidently revolving some plans in regard to Kashmir that will not bear exposure to light, the removal of the Bengalis from position of influence in the State, necessarily considered the first step toward the accomplishment without disagreable friction. The death of the old Maharaja was most unfortunate at this moment, and an the present ruling Prince very greatly needs advice and, guidance, the reported exodus of the Bengalis from Cashmere is the more to be regretted In course of time, too as Cashmere is to be shortly connected with British India by an extension of our Railways system. The Govt. may think fit to remove its summer residence from Simla to the “Happy Valley.” For no better place can possibly be selected for the purpose… It has been a veritable Naboths Vine Yeard, at which our Govt. has always been casting wistful eyes, longingly and lingeringly, and now under the plea of guarding India from Russian invasion, it is sought to colonise that territory with Anglo-Indians as a preliminary step, we believe, to its absolute annexation afterwards. The settlement of Kashmir with Anglo- Indians cannot fail to be followed up with the almost immediate absorp tion of the State …. We pity the lot of poor Cashmere and its Maharaja, and the present policy of Lord Dufferin in regard to that State is very much to be condemned. Lord Dufferin may imagine or plead, as we found him to do in regard to upper Burma, that he is justified by grave political reasons but such repeated acts of high-handdness will, we are afraid, lead to serious and unexpected disasters in the end. The Russian progress towards India may be put forward as an excuse for the present policy in connection with Cashmere, and, in trying to avert or remove danger, immediate peril is courted.
Report on the affairs of the State of Jammu & Kashmir by the Resident of Kashmir. March 5, 1888
(Extract) I have had more opportunities of studying the Maharaja’s character than perhaps any other officer in the country. My intercourse with him, official, private, and social, has boon frequent; my relations with him have been always friendly, there has never been any friction or tension between us. He has never failed in personal courtesy to me, nor ever refused to see me at any time or on any occasion; therefore I can fairly say that I am not actuated by any feelings of personal dislike tow-arcs His Highness.
I think, however, that the Government of India should be under no illusion as regards Maharaja Pertap Singh. From first to last I have failed to discover in him any sustained capacity for governing his country, or any genuine desire to ameliorate its condition, or to introduce those reforms which he has acknowledged to be necessary. More than two years have passed since his accession, but not only has he achieved nothing, but he has opposed beneficial measures proposed by others. The progress made has been in spite of him. I do not believe he is loyal, but fortunately he is powerless to carry his country with him. And I am convinced that the Government will commit a serious mistake if it believes that the reforms which the country urgently needs will ever be effected by Maharaja Pertap Singh. He will never, of his own free will, establish a capable and honest administration: nor, if any power of interference is left him, will he permit any administration appointed by the Government of India to carry on the business of the country. He will thwart and oppose it in every way he dares; the only restraint will be the limit of his powers and his fears; therefore I do not earnestly advise that the Maharaja be made plainly to understand that he has had his chance, and that he will not be allowed any longer to stand in the way. I would assign him a liberal income, to be placed at his absolute disposal, and treat him with full honour as titular Chief, but I would exclude him from all real power. He may reign, but not govern. A great danger with the Maharaja is that his notorious weakness of character and purpose render him and easy tool in the hands of an unscrupulous adviser, and therefore it is essential that he should be controlled by some agency upon which the Government of India can place confidence. I consider that a reduction of the Maharaja’s authority on these lines is an essential condition precedent to all ther necessary measures. Next, as to the form of Government. One plan is to appoint Raja Amar Singh o Prime Minister, on condition of his undertaking to carry out in all respects the policy of the Government of India. He has not got sufficient experience or solidity of character to execute a task of this magnitude without the aid of a resolute and experienced adviser, and it would be necessary to constitute some such office as “Secretary to Government”, and to nominate to it a suitable British Officer Native or European. I have great doubts whether Raja Amar Singh can be trusted, and, unless he has strong officer at his elbow to keep him straight, I do not think it would be safe to employ him. He has never forgotten his father’s intentions on his behalf, and the object he is working for is to become Maharaja of Kashmir. Once he gets power into his own hands he will use it without scruple to attain this end. At present the Maharaja is friendly to Raja Amar Singh, because he wishes to Break the bond which unites the two younger brothers and Diwan Lachman Das, but there is no genuine affection or confidence between them; and the well-known fact that the Late Maharaja would have liked to supersede Partab Singh in favour of his youngest brother, is a special cause of jealousy. And I Should expect that, after a short time, all the influence which the Maharaja possesses, especially Zenana influence, would be brought to bear against Amar Singh. Another probable result of his elevation would be a feud between him and his brother Ram Singh, thereby raising against him another hostile party. Another plan is to bring in a Prime Minister from elsewhere. There is no one in the Maharaja’s employ fit for the post, and the selection would need particular care. The situation is this: no Native could administer the affairs of Jammu and Kashmir unless he is not only the exceptionally strong Character but also exceptionally honest; and, in any case he would require besides the full support of the Government of India. If a weak man is chosen he will succumb to local intrigue, notwithstanding all the support which tile Government may give him; and, if he is not honest, he will yield to the temptations with which the place abounds, and go with the swim. But, if a Native Minister is brought in from outside, I recommend precautionary measures being adopted with the Young Rajas. I should order each of them to take up his residence in his own Jagir, and so occupy the same position as. Raja Moti Singh of Punch. It is not right that these young men should be given large jagirs which they never visit. It ought to be a condition of the grant that they reside on their property and be personally responsible for its administration. They might pay yearly visits to Jammu just as Moti Singh does. Another good result of this measure would be to lay ther foundation of class such as exist in the Rajput States. As long as Raja Ram Singh continues to command the State Army there is no hope of any serious-reorganisation; and if Raja Amar Singh were to remain at Jammu, he would not leave a stone unturned to render the Prime Minister’s position untenable. A third plan is to continue the existing Council, Making the Resident its temporary head and strengthening it by the addition of two selected Natives. An administration so constituted would probably be strong enough to introduce all needful reforms, and to set the country in order. Three years would suffice to set things straight, and the Resident might then withdraw from the headship of the Council, and an administration be established on ordinary Native lines. I believe that, sooner or later, the Government will have tot choose one or other of these three plans or some modifications of them. But, whatever lan is adopted, there is one measure which must under any circumstances be prescribed. This is, first, the immediate removal of the band of incompetent corrupt, and mischievous men who are at the bottom of most: of the intrigues by which this unfortunate State is torn; and, secondly, the appointment of an adequate number of trained. native officials on reasonable salaries who can be trusted, to carry out the orders given to p them. Until the entire Kashmir establishment has been recast, and honest and competent servants substituted for the fraudulent and incapable men now employed, no reforms can be carried out, nor can any mere alteration of the Government be of any use.
Kharita from Partap Singh to the Viceroy. April 13, 1888
(Extract) Your Excellency is already aware that circumstances obliged me to dismiss Diwan Lachman Das, Prime Minister and President of the Council. As I think that the Council which was formed with your kind advice should be continued, I have prepared a scheme for its reorganization which I beg to forward herewith to your Excellency.
I beg to express the high consideration and esteem I entertain for your Excellency and to subscribe myself, etc.
JAMMU & KASHMIR COUNCIL CONSTITUTION
(l) The Council shall consist of a President, Vice-President, three members, and a Secretary.
(2) His Highness the Maharaja shall be the President.
(3) Highness shall appoint a Vice-President, Members and a Secretary.
(4) Three shall form a quorum.
(5) The Vice-President, Members, and the Secretary may be removed and substituted by majority of votes of the Members of the Council, for reasons to be recorded.
(6) The Council shall be a consultative one.
APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS
(7) The Raja Amar Singh is hereby appointed VicePresident and Raja Ram Singh and Babu Nilambar Milkers Members, with Diwan Janki Prasad, Member and Secretary (8) The Members shall represent the ‘following branches of administration:
(i) Military – Raja Ram Singh.
(ii) Judicial and Foreign Department – Raja Amar Singh.
(iii) Revenue – Babu Nilambar Mukerji.
(iv) Miscellaneous – Diwan Janki Prasad.
9. The Vice-President shall also be the Prime Minister with executive powers.
10. The Vice-President and Members shall take the following oath: – “I solemnly declare that in giving my opinion as a Member of Council, I shall keep in view the best interests of the State, and shall freely express my honest convictions, without fear or favour, and I shall not divulge any secrets of the State.”
11. The Council shall sit three days in the week, authorised holidays excepted, and any extraordinary meeting shall be held, on the requisition of the Prime Minister.
12. It shall be the duty of the Council to legislate and hear and pass opinion on all subjects that may be brought forward by the Members.
13. The Council shall, on meeting, frame rules for its guidance, which may be removed or modified by it only.
14. All matters shall be decided on majority of votes.
15. Besides the matters which may be brought forward in the Council by the Members, the Prime Minister, who is the head of the Executive Government under His Highness, may refer to the Council for opinion all important questions affecting the administration in all its branches.
16. The respective opinions of the several Members shall be recorded and signed.
17. When a Member brings forward, or the Prime Minister refers, any special matter to the Council, it shall be the duty of the Secretary to furnish all the members with a written statement of the subject matter.
18. The office establishment shall be considered and settled by the Council on meeting.
Kharita from Partap Singh to the Viceroy. July 25, 1888
(Extract) The Government of India have decided to accept in principal the scheme which His Highness has put forward, and your own alternative proposals have for the present been set aside. In coming to this conclusion the Governor-General in Council has not overlooked the fact that the Maharaja’s Scheme is open to many objections and that partly on account of His Highness’s personal character and partly for other reasons, it is not unlikely to prove a failure. But before sanctioning any measures which would have the effect, directly or indirectly, of taking all power out of the Maharaja’s hand, the Government of India have felt that it would be just and right to allow the Maharaja a further opportunity of showing whether he is competent to discharge the duties of a responsible ruler. If after full and fair trial it becomes evident that he is wholly incapable of conducting the administration of the State the proposals which you have submitted will be reconsidered. In the meantime I am to ask you to afford the Maharaja every assistance in your power with regard to the reorganisation of his Council and all other matter upon which he may consult you. The Governor-General in Council does not desire you to press upon him your own views as to these matters. You should understand that the responsibility for the success or failure of the present experiment will rest upon the Maharaja, and your aim should be to meet his wishes in every possible mender, not refusing your advice when His Highness asks for it, but avoiding any course of action which might prevent him from feeling that the Government of India desire to allow him the fullest opportunity of proving his fitness. You should help His Highness as much as possible in doing this, but you should not insist upon the advantage of any measure which he disapproves, however desirable it may seem to be in his own interests.
You will notice that the Government of India have declined to permit the employment of Babu Nilambar Mukerji as member of Council in charge of the revenue administration. If the Maharaja should raise the question of employing him in any other capacity, you may inform His Highness that the Government of India do not consider it desirable that the Babu should return to Kashmir. With reference to the question of principle where the Maharaja is at liberty to employ Native British subjects without the consent of the British Government, you should give His Highness to understand that the interpretation of the treaty of 1846 with regard to this point is no longer open to discussion. The Government of India desire to give the Maharaja all possible assistance, and he trill always find them willing to place at his their right to be consulted before any British subjects receive employment within the State.
The enclosed kharita points out to the Maharaja the urgent necessity for a thorough examination in to the condition of tine Kashmir finances. This is evidently a point of the greatest importance, and you should use your influence to bring it to the special notice of His Highness and his advisers.
Kharita from Viceroy to Maharaja Partap Singh. July 25, 1888
(Extract) I have received your Highness’s letter of the I Seth of April, informing me of the dismissal of Diwan Lachman Das, and forwarding, for my consideration, a scheme which you have prepared for the re-organisation of your Council.
Your Highness’s letter has received my most careful attention, and I have now to inform you of the conclusions at which I have arrived with regard to the very important questions which you have been good enough to refer to me.
in the first place, 1 cannot avoid informing your Highness that the news of the sudden removal of Diwan Lachman Das was received by me with some surprise. Your Highness appointed him to your council after consulting me, and I hoped that your Highness would, before making another change of Governments give me some previous intimation of your views. However, this point has already been brought to your notice by Mr. Plowden and I do not now desire to dwell upon it any further.
With regard to your Highness’s scheme for the future administration of Kashmir, I would ask you to consider the following observations.
Your Highness proposes that the administration should be conducted or assisted by a council consisting of a President, .a Vice-President, three other members, and a secretary. The presidency you would retain in your own hands. You would appoint your brother Raja Amar Singh to be Vice-President, and you would also make him Prime Minister with executive powers. The other three members of the Council would be Raja Ram Singh, Babu Nilambar Mukerji, and Diwan Janki Prasad; and they would be charged respectively with the control of affairs in the military, revenue, and miscellaneous departments. The Prime Minister would have special charge of the judicial and foreign departments. Diwan Janki Prasad would be Secretary in addition to his other duties. It is proposed that the Council should be consultative. It appears to me that a Government constituted in this manner is open to some criticism. In the first place, I am inclh1cd to doubt whether it is altogether in accordance with your Highness’s dignity to be President of the Council. Secondly. your Highness’s brothers are still young, and have had little opportunity of acquiring practical experience in administrative work. Babu Nilambar Mukerji has no knowledge of revenue matters, and is altogether unfit to take charge of so important a department of the administration. Of Divan Janki Prasad l know little, but I understand that he is not a man of marked character and ability. Under these circumstances your Highness’s scheme does not appear to me to hold out any certain promise of success. Nevertheless, I do not desire to raise any objection to the principle of the proposed arrangements. I regard your Highness as the responsible ruler of the State, and I wish to meet your views as far as possible, and to afford you every assistance in carrying them out. If, therefore, your Highness prefers to maintain a Council and to assume the presidency yourself. I . m ready to assent to your views in this matter, and also with :regard to the nomination of your brothers and Diwan Janki Prasad. On one point only I feel that in your Highness’s interests I must ask you to modify your proposals. I cannot think that the appointment of Babu Nilambar Mukerji as Revenue Minister would be desirable. I am of opinion that for the charge of revenue affairs your Highness should secure the services of some thoroughly competent of official with practical experience of administration. I also think that at least one other official of similar qualifications should be appointed to direct, either as member of Council or in some capacity, the judicial and executive branches of your Government. If your Highness can name any Native Officials in the British Service who seem to me to possess the requisite qualifications I shall be glad to place them at your disposal. If your Highness cannot suggest any names I shall be ready and willing to make inquiries, and to supply you with the best men available either in the Punjab or elsewhere. I have learnt with pleasure that your Highness has already asked for the services of some four or five officers to be employed in the accounts and forest departments. But your Highness’s government seems to require something more than the loan of a few subordinate officials. What is wanted is that you should associate with your principal officers two or three thoroughly trained and capable persons, who will be able to give your Highness effective aid in directing and controlling the main branches of the administration. I trust that your Highness will consider these suggestions and will take such steps as may have the effect of strengthening your government from an administrative point of view. I need hardly add that, with regard to this question and to all other questions of importance. Your Highness should freely consult the Resident, who will give you every assistance in his power.
In making these observations I do not overlook the fact, that, since the appointment of the Council of which Diwan Lachman Das was a member, considerable progress has been made in the direction of reforms useful work has been done with regard to the revenue administration, and in the reorganization of the Public Works and Medical Departments. But much remains to be done, and it is because I am deeply conscious of the importance of the Kashmir State, and of the responsibilities of the British Government in regard to it, that I have so carefully examined the proposals which your Highness. has put forward.
I would particularly urge upon your Highness’s attention the necessity for a careful investigation into the condition of your Highness’s finances, and of the executive and judicial services. Until these are placed upon a thoroughly sound footing it will be impossible to hope for any material increase in the prosperity of the State.
Government of India to the Secretary of State. August 18, 1888
(Extract) In March last Mr. Plowden thought the time had come when for the sake of the State, it was essential to erect some reduction of the Maharaja’s authority. There is no doubt some justification for Mr. Plowden’s estimate of His Highness’s capacity to rule; but on the other hand, the condition of the State does not seem to demand at present such decided action as Mr. Plowden has suggested. We have, therefore, determined not to resort to measures which would have the effect, directly or indirectly, of taking the power out of the Maharaja’s hands, and His Highness will now have another opportunity of showing under favourable circumstances whether he is capable of carrying on the administration.
Secretary of State to the Government of India. October 12, 1888
(Extract) 1.I have perused with deep interest the papers regarding Kashmir affairs which accompanied your Excellency’s letter of the 18th August, 1888. From them I learn that the instability of the several administrations to which Maharaja Partab Singh had entrusted the management of the affairs of his State since his accession in 1885 has much retarded the execution of the various reforms which have been repeatedly pressed on the attention of the Maharaja, and that, after the abrupt dismissal of the president of the Council, Diwan Lachman Has, in March last, by the Maharaja, His Highness submitted for the consideration of your Excellency a scheme for the reconstitution of the State Council, in which the Maharaja proposed to assume the post of the President.
2. Though this scheme of administration is open to many objections, partly on account of the Maharaja’s personal character, and for the other reasons, and is not unlikely to prove a failure your Excellency’s Government have determined to allow His Highness a further opportunity of showing whether he is competent to discharge the duties of a responsible ruler.
3. Judging from the reports of the Residents in Kashmir. I can have little expectation myself that the experiment of a Council presided over by the Maharaja will be successful; but, on the other hand, the objections to any radical change in the government of the province at the present juncture are such that I am willing to sanction your proposal to give the Maharaja another occasion of proving whether His Highness possesses either the capacity or the will to introduce and carry into effect those administrative measures which are essential to the prosperity and security of the Kashmir State.
Secretary of State to the Government of India. February 17, 1889
(Extract) The day before yesterday I had placed in my hands such reliable evidence as l have said invariably to those who have talked to me, would alone satisfy me of the disloyalty or utter inbecility of the present Ruler of Jammu.
This consists of a batch of thirty-four letters in the Maharaja’s own handwriting, some calf which are so compromising as to leave, I submit, no course open save his removal from the State, unless the alternative theory be accepted of his being a half-witted individual, irresponsible for his own acts. Of their authenticity I have, myself, no doubt, and they are admitted to be in the Maharaja’s own handwriting by his brother Raja Amar Singh; besides, a mass of letters like this are not likely to be forgeries in the way one or to might be.
But, side by side with these treasonable letters in this packet there are others in an utterly foolish strain, thereby confirming me in the conclusion I have unwillingly come to that, though with lucid intervals of good sense and propriety, the Maharaja is utterly incapable of being left in charge of his own affairs. The gist of these other letters is that the Maharaja offers large sums of money to certain individuals on condition that they will murder or cause to be removed, Plowden, the late Resident, his own two brothers, Ram Singh and Amar Singh, and one of the Maharanis, who, for some reason, is personally objectionable to him.
The conclusions the letters lead me to are confirmed by certain rather extraordinary acts of the Maharaja in appointing unworthy and incapable persons to important offices of the State, even since I took over charge, without consulting the proper counsellor, or, in fact, any one at all. The thing is the Maharaja is a timid and very superstitious man at the entire mercy of a set of unscrupulous scoundrels who take advantage of his fears and imbecility to pluder the State to any extent, and there appear to me weighty reasons for advising the practical setting aside of the Maharaja’s authority. It surely is politically dangerous to leave the actual administration of this great State in the hands of an individual who may play us false at any moment, without, perhaps appreciatin~ the disaster that would follow, and, I believe, any steps Government may take short of annexation will be right and necessary, and generally approved by the Princes and Chiefs of India.
Under the circumstances stated I think it is necessary for me to come to Calcutta at once on hearing from you, to talk the matter fully over with you, so that you may be in a position definitely to settle the future policy of Government towards the State
Irshad of Maharaja Partap Singh, Edict of Abdication. March 8, 1889
(Extract) My dear brother Raja Amar Singh, In the interests of the State’ and for better administration of the country, and with a view to remodel it, as near as possible, on the English system, I hereby authorise a Council the members of which, for period of five years, will conduct all the public affairs of the State as they think best. The members will be as follows:
Raja Ram Singh and Raja Amar Singh, An English member, specially selected by the Government of India on a salary Rs.2,000 or 3,000 per month.
Rai Bahadur Suraj Kaul and Rai Bahadur Bhag Ram.
This Council will have full and sole powers in all the public Departments of the State for a period of five years. In the event of a vacancy occurring among the three last members during the prescribed period of five years the Government of India will be asked to nominate a new member. After the expiration of the said period of five years the Maharaja will have the power of reorganising the administration if he finds it necessary to do so. This period of five years will count from the date of this edict.
The Council will not interfere in any way with the private affairs of the Maharaja. The Maharaja will continue to draw his monthly allowance for his privy purse as hitherto, no change whatever being made. The jagirs and other grants of immoveable, movable property hitherto made by the Maharaja will hold good and the Council will not interfere. All usual expenses connected with marriages and other family customs will be provided by the State. Of my two brothers I will myself appoint one as President of the Council. During the said period of five years the Maharaja will not interfere and will have no voice in the administration of the public affairs of the State, but he will continue to enjoy the honorary rights and position of Maharaja.
The Council have no power to alter existing treaties without the previous approval of the Maharaja. The Council will have no power to assign jagirs or immovable property of the State or to make new rules on such subjects without the consent of the Maharaja.
Signed and sealed by His Highness,the Maharaja
Seal of the ‘ State”. On 27th Bhagan, 1945, – 8th March, 1889
Irshad of Maharaja Partap Singh, Edict of Abdication. March 13, 1889
(Extract) I send you the original edict (with translation) and the official letter handed to me by the Maharaja of Kashmir containing His Highness application to be relieved of the management for a time of State affairs in order to redeem the past. I trust this voluntary offer on his part may afford, with perhaps further conditions, an acceptable way out of no doubt a very acute difficulty.
As the Government of India have carefully refrained as long as was possible from any sort of interference in the direct management in the affairs of the Kashmir State, so I think now a direct appeal to do so cannot be ignored, and that there should be no hesitation in adopting the best and most complete measure likely to bring about the reforms necessary.
Instruction from the Government of India to the Resident in Kashmir. April 1, 1889
(Extract) I am to request you to inform the Maharaja that for a time at least he will be expected to refrain from al! interference in the Administration. He will retain his rank and dignity as Chief of the State; but full powers of government will be Vested in a Council consisting of the Maharaja’s brothers and three or four officials selected by the Government of India.
It is not thought desirable that one of these officials should be an Englishman. The President of the Council will be Raja Amar Singh. Besides, retaining his rank and dignity the Maharaja will receive from the revenues of the State an annual sum sufficient to maintain his household in due comfort, and to defray any expenditure which may rightly devolve upon him; but he will have no power of allienating the State revenues, and the sum placed at his disposal, though adequate, must not be extravagantly large.
I am further to request you to make the Maharaja and the Members of the Council thoroughly understand that, although the Council will have full powers of administration, they will be expected to exercise those powers under the guidance of the Resident. They will take no steps of importance without consulting him, and they will follow his advice whenever it may be offered.
In communicating to the Maharaja and others concerned the decision of the Government of India? You should be careful to avoid basing that decision exclusively either upon the letters or upon the Maharaja’s resignation. The letters are repudiated by the Maharaja and as 1 have said before they are not of a very novel character; while on the other hand the Government of India are by no means prepared to make the present settlement a matter of compact with the Maharaja, and to accept all the conditions laid down by his edict of the 8th March, for example the five year’s limit. You should therefore base the decision of the Government upon a full consideration of all the circumstances, the letters and the Maharaja’s wish to retire from the control of affairs being considered amongst other things, but only as portions of a difficult and complicated case, which it has been necessary to settle on broader grounds of general policy. You should now proceed to work out fresh proposals upon the lines I have indicated. It will be necessary in the first place to define exactly the future position of the Maharaja, the amount of his annual allowance, the expenses which it is intended to cover, the extent of his powers over his own house hold, and generally the conditions which he will have to conform. It will also be necessary to show the proposed constitution of the Council the duties falling upon each of its members, and the method of transacting business. You should also ascertain the requirements of the State in the manner of subordinate officials, and should submit for the approval of the Government your views as to the steps to be taken for reorganising the administrative services. Informing those views you should remember that the Government of India has no desire to turn Kashmir into the semblance of a British district, or to place all administrative posts in the hands of Panjabi foreigners. The want of good native officials makes it necessary to import some trained men from the outside, but the men so imported should be kept as low as possible, and your object should be to form with their help a class of Kashmiri officials who will be capable hereafter of administering the State themselves. It is altogether against the wishes of the Government to interfere unnecessarily with the customs and traditions of a Native State, or to force upon it the precise methods of administration obtaining in British territory. Administrative efficiency is not the only object to be attained in such case, nor, indeed the principal object.
From the Resident in Kashmir to Raja Amar Singh, Prime Minister, Kashmir. April 17, 1889
(Extract) With reference to your No. 159, dated 8th March, 1889, 1 beg to inform you that the letter with its enclosures was laid before his Excellency the Viceroy and governor-general in Council, who, after full consideration of the circumstances and the general condition of affairs in the Kashmir State for a long time past, has ordered me to inform His Highness the Maharaja that for a time at least he will be expected to refrain from all interference in the administration. He will retain his Rank and dignity as Chief of the State, but full powers of Government will be vested in a Council consisting of the Maharaja’s brothers and three or four officials selected by the Government of India. It is not thought desirable that one of these officials should be an Englishman. Besides retaining his rank and dignity, the Maharaja will receive from the revenues of the State an annual sum sufficient to maintain his household in due comfort and to defray any expenditure that may rightly Devolve upon him, but he will have no power of alienating the State revenues, and the sum placed at his disposal though Adequate, will not be extravagantly large.
His Highness the Maharaja and the Members of Council should thoroughly understand that, although the Council will have full powers of administration, they will be expected to exercise those powers under the guidance of the British Resident. They will take no step of importance without consulting him, and they will follow his advice whenever it may be offered.
Such are the orders of the Government of India, and on my own part, I beg you will assure His Highness that it will be my endeavor to assist in carrying them out in the way I trust that may be most conductive to the happiness and benefit of His Highness and the State.
Lord Lansdowne to Maharaja of Kashmir,Letter from Digby to London Times. September 7, 1889
(Extract) Lord Lansdowne has recently done an exceedingly kindly thing in a characteristically pleasing way. What he has done will stand him in good stead as Viceroy of India. Nowhere in the world does a generous deed meet with so much appreciation as in India. Evidently moved by the many circumstances, pathetic and otherwise connected with the virtual deposition of the Maharaja of Kashmir, Lord Lansdowne, I am informed, has granted permission to the Maharaja to see him. This kindness has raised great hopes in the heart of the Maharaja and in the minds of his supporters. They argue, t is thought on good grounds, that the Viceroy would never have suggested the interview it is declared the suggestion came from above – unless he was prepared to do justice to the Maharaja as H’s Highness understands that phrase. If Lord Lansdowne does not intend to restore Partab to his throne and reinstate him with the authority taken from him a few months ago, the kindness will prove to have been a mistake; the resulting disappointment will be most keen. It is not possible to overstate the excitement, which has been caused -throughout India by the Maharaja’s deposition. Nothing that has happened in the Empire during the past thirty years has so vitally stirred Indians of all races, in every grade of society-this, too, in feudatory States and British districts alike. For the sake of peace and good-will in India and for better government and the increased security of our rule, it is earnestly to be hoped That a return to the status quo in Kashmir is contemplated by Lord Lansdowne and will shortly be arranged.
Lord Lansdowne, if-with such guarantees as the Maharaja has expressed his willingness to give for the good government of the people of Kashmir – he were to restore Partab Singh to his throne, would do not merely a kindly, but also an eminently wise thing. Notwithstanding what has been publicly said by an-ex India official, who ought to have known better, respecting the character of the Maharaja, His Highness is not ‘a drunken debaucher ‘, nor is he a man of immoral life. He has never been in the habit of taking intoxicating liquors; he is singularly abstemious. He has led a simple life, and has carefully avoided sensuality. The only fault I have ever heard brought against him by any one acquainted at first-hand with his character is that the rites of the religion he believes in have had more influence over him than on his subjects or his co-religionists think right, but more than certain Europeans Approve, and that his devotions and his contemplation regarding a future life have taken up too much of his time. He is kind and indulgent and very affectionate. Instances were related to me while I was in India last year, illustrative of his great -thoughtfulness and goodness of heart. He has more than once been known to put himself to inconvenience rather than occasion additional trouble to those about him. So much for his character as a man. If he had only had fair play as good a record of the Maharaja as a ruler would by this time have been forthcoming. Partab Singh, a despotic sovereign, began his reign well. Here is a record of what was begun-very largely in many cases, entirely in others-on the Maharaja’s own initiative. I mention only the more prominent reforms:
1. Payment of all civil and military salaries monthly instead of at irregular intervals, and thus avoiding accummulation of arrears
2. Abolition of export duties.
3. Abolition of numerous vexatious duties on manufacturers and traders.
4. Abolition of the harkarabeshi, the sewai, and other heavy taxes levied on the cultivators of the soil.
5. Stoppage of the inhuman practice of punishing the innocent relatives of deserters from the army when the deserters themselves could not be found.
6. Abolition of the pernicious practice of farming the land revenue by letting it to the highest bidder.
7. Abolition of the practice of buying ghee, horses, wool and other articles. through the revenue officials from cultivators, at nominal prices fixed by Government.
8. Abolition of the tax on Mohammedan marriages.
9. Increased allotment of funds for public works.
10. Stringent orders issued to prevent high officials and influential men influencing the decisions of Courts of Justice.
11. Equalization of the customs duty on salt.
12. Establishment of high schools at Jammu and Srinagar.
13. Municipal constitution granted to the cities of Jammu and Srinagar.
14. Equitable adjustment of import duties.
15. Leave Code, Educational Code, and other rules calculated to promote public interests provided. 16. Corruption checked among civil and revenue officials by the introduction of a system of strict supervision as well as by the importation of an honest and educated element in the service. And,
17. Amendment of certain laws.
Besides all these, a number of other reforms were taken in hand, and it was intended to press them with velour. Unfortunately, matters did not continue so excellently as they were begun, though they have always been fairly well conducted The fault is only a remote degree, if at all, lies with the Maharaja. The Residency system has been the bane of the Kashmir State, as it has been the bane of many another State in India. Let me show how this came about.
Partab Singh’s accession was marked by a new departure in our relations with Kashmir. For the first time since Kashmir has been a feudatory of the British Crown, a Resident was appointed to the Himalyan Kingdom. The result was not satisfactory. Soon after Colonel Nisbet became Resident, a bundle of letters incriminating the Maharaja and making him a party to reasonable practices were handed to the Resident. He took them to Calcutta. Sir John Gorst, in the house of Commons, speaking the mind of the Government of India, as well as of the Secretary of State, declared no importance was attached to them. In the meantime by the exercise of what, the Maharaja himself in his letter to the Viceroy calls “many-sided pressures, a (so-called) letter of abdication was obtained from the Maharaja. On the strength of that document Partab Singh has been deposed. But not even the conditions of that communications have been carried out. The utmost that, under “many-sided pressures”, the Maharaja would agree to was, that the assistance of the Government of India should be asked in the formation of a Council, over which Maharaja was to preside. This Council was to assist the Maharaja in carrying out needed reforms. Five Years was the limit set to this arrangement. The response to this proposal was a letter from the Government of India, informing the Maharaja that his offer has been accepted (!), he was to stand aside from all exercise of authority, the Resident was to become the Raja, and he was told an allowance, which was ungenerously described as sufficient for dignity but not for extravagance, would be made to him. No period was fixed for this arrangement to end. It might be As long as the sun and the moon endure”, so for as the letter of (virtual) deposition was concerned. The Government of India say that the letter contains some inconvenient stipulations’ and it would be embarrassing to it as it stands. As soon as the Maharaja saw the manner in which the offer extorted from him had been misinterpreted, he wrote a long letter to the Viceroy disclaiming the interpretation put upon what he said, and concluding by asking Lord Lansdowne, if he could not release him from the intolerable position in which he had been placed. to shoot him through the head. Death was preferable to the dishonor to which he had been subjected. Despite the Resident’s efforts to detain him, the Maharaja left Srinagar and moved nearer to British territory to await the Viceroy’s reply. That reply a telegram in The Times last week tells us, contains an expression of the hope of the Government of India that it may hereafter see its way to restore Partab Singh to his rightful position. Possibly the interview promised to the Maharaja may be the means of the bringing this about speedily. This incident, like scores of others affecting Indian Princes and their States, has happened, because the Government of India is in no way subject to that embodied conscience of present day civilization-an enlightened public opinion possessing punitive power. Without meaning it, and doubtless working, as it considers, with a shingle eye to the maintenance of British supremacy in India, the Indian Foreign Office is frequently guilty of grievous injustice. That office, more than any other department in the Indian Government, is in a position which neither man nor institution is good enough, or free enough from liability to error, to bear. There is no one to call it to account, no over-zeal, no one to suggest one to check its (may be inadvertent) that there is, perhaps, another side to a matter than that which has fixed itself in the Foreign Secretary’s mind; not a whisper is ever raised, or is likely to be ever raised, by any one possessing power in India, suggesting that the traditions of the office might with advantage be at times broken; it is prosecutor, judge, and executioner, in its hands an India Prince is between the upper and nether millstones. The healthy criticism, the more or less adequate knowledge, and the sense of responsibility to Parliament and the Press, which keep the Foreign, Home, and Colonial Departments in touch with the nation, and which prevent any gross injustice or wide deviation from righteousness are wholly wanting in India. They are not supplied by the British Parliament, the ultimate ruler of India. As a consequence, the Indian Foreign Office, without possibly knowing it and certainly in many instances without meaning it, has been and s responsible for a vast number of acts of injustice which, f set forth in detail, would hardly be credited. The Kashmir incident is one of these. If it be true that Lord Lansdowne intends himself to see Maharaja Partab Singh, and to restore, with guarantees, the ruler of Kashmir to his place of power, His Excellency will do as much to strengthen the Queen-Empress’s supremacy in India, as has been done by all the money spent during the past four or five years in strengthening the North-Western Frontier.
Constitution of the State Council. 1889
1. The Council will be composed as follows : Raja Ram Singh, Raja Amar Singh, Rai Bahadur, Pandit Suraj Koul, Rai Bahadur, Pandit Bhag Ram and such other members as may be added from time to time by the Government of India.
2. The Council shall appoint one of its members as Secretary.
3. Vacancies in the offices of Members of Council shall be filled up and the nomination of additional members shall be made by the Government of India.
4. The distribution of business among the members shall be regulated from time to time by orders passed in Council.
POWERS OF COUNCIL
5. Subject to the general control of the Resident, the Council shall be the final authority on all questions affecting the frontier relations of the State and its dependencies and in all matters appertaining to its internal administration.
6. The Members-in-charge of departments of the administration shall prepare a budget estimate of their respective departments for the final sanction and approval of the Council.
7. No legislative measures or schemes of general State reform shall be introduced except with the previous sanction of the Council.
8. The Council shall have power to veto or alter any orders passed by the Member-in-charge of the department in chambers and may call for and revise any proceedings in any department of the administration.
9. All appointments and removals of Gazetted Officers shall be made by order of the Council.
10. The Council may lay down special rules for the guidance of any department of the administration.
CONDUCT OF BUSINESS
The Council shall hold its sittings on such date and at such time and
11. place as may be determined.
12. Two days before the meeting the Secretary shall prepare an agenda of the business to be laid before the Council and circulate the same among the Members.
13. Face Member shall at the same time be furnished as far as possible with copies of all the papers to be brought up at the meeting.
14. No motion when more than one Member present objects shall be laid before any meeting of Council for consideration until and unless it is borne on the agenda and a copy thereof supplied to each Member as provided in rules 12 and
15. Three Members shall form a quorum.
16. If a quorum is not formed the meeting shall be adjourned till such day as the Chairman may direct.
17. If within fifteen minutes of the hour fixed for Meeting Council, all the Members have not arrived those present may elect a Chairman, and proceed to transact business provided a quorum is present.
18. In emergent case Raja Ram Singh and Raja Amar Singh may convene a special meeting of Council and the rules herein before prescribed for ordinary meetings shall apply to such meeting.
19. All proceedings in Council shall be conducted in Vernacular. Every resolution as passed by a majority of votes shall be entered in detail in a minute book by the Secretary and before the close of the meeting the proceedings shall be read over to all the Members present and shall be signed by then provided that any Member or Members dissenting from any resolution shall if they so desire cause their dissent to be recorded.
20. In English translation of the proceedings shall be forwarded without delay to the Resident for information.
21. The Resident shall be the final referee in all matters and may veto any resolution passed by the Council or suspend action thereon pending further explanation.
DUTIES OF SECRETARY
22. The Secretary shall:
a. Receive all papers submitted to the Council.
b. Prepare and circulate agenda of business and give due notice of meetings to the Members.
c. Call for information on matters to be brought up before the Council.
d. Supervise the working of the office and custody and maintenance of records.
e. Furnish each Member with copy of the proceedings of the Council.
f. Compile the administration report and returns.
g. Comply with requisitions made to him by the Members-in-charge of departments.
22. See that reports called for the Council are promptly sent for 1. from departments concerned. h. Conduct all routine business appertaining to his office.
23. The Secretary shall keep:
a. The seal of the Council.
b. Registers of all establishments employed in the State, amended up-to-date.
c. Budget estimates as sanctioned by the Council.
d. Check statements of Budget sanctions.
e. Register of supplementary Budget sanctions.
f. List of pending references.
g. Minute books of proceedings.
24. If a member is unable to attend the meeting of the Council he shall notify the fact to the Secretary.
25. All proceedings of the Council unless otherwise directed by the Council shall by published in the Local Gazette.
23. The Council may frame subsidiary rules for carrying out the above provisions and for regulating other matters falling within the scope of their authority.
Administration of Justice in Kashmir State, Note by Bhag Ram, Judicial Member of the Council. November 18, 1889
I will avoid making any allusions to faulty procedure and technical drawbacks, instances of which are too numerous to mention, but I feel bound to state that, so far as my experience goes, the presiding officers of the Courts are as a class, generally, far from upright. Holding their appointments during. the pleasure of the Chief, they not uncommonly gave way to influence, in fact the dominant influence of the Maharaja’s servants had so powerful an effect over the Courts, that on one occasion nearly three weeks after my arrival, Mian Sawal Singh sent word to me through a big official, asking me to let off a person sentenced to imprisonment by one of my Subordinate Judges. This however, was the first and the last attempt so far as I was concerned, as I took the opportunity then and there to announce publicly, that I shall be compelled to take very serious notice if such perversion of justice was again attempted. I had reason to believe that my action did not meet with the approbation of the Maharaja, and on a second occasion when His Highness himself spoke to me in regard to another criminal case, I told him that I could only decide cases. according to the dictates of my own conscience. The presiding officers of Courts and judicial work performed by their clerks, and it has been with great difficulty that I have partially succeeded in getting them to record their proceedings in their hand. There are still a number of ignorant and illiterate Tehsildars and other officers, owing their employment to strong official influence, who would not and could not carry out by instructions. I have come across cases, nay criminal trials in which a single line in the form of a judgement had never been recorded while instances have repeatedly come to my notice of Courts, neglecting the rudest principles of equity and jurisprudence, and putting suitors to all sorts of annoyance. Having had the honour to showing to the Resident a number of my decisions, bearing out the views expressed above, I hardly think it necessary to encumber this note with detailed particulars. Judicial cases against private persons or State servants, interested in politics, or in the intrigues at Court, are as a rule kept pending or adjourned sine die, such postponement having the two-fold object of keeping the culprit in awe and chestising him on occurrence of a suitable opportunity. During the ministry of Diwans Lachman Dass and Anant Ram, Judicial Courts could not work with a grain of independence or self-respect. Judges blindly disposed of cases, as required by the Ministers in power, without any reference to the merits, and not infrequently received written orders dictating decisions which were to be given. Judicial officers, from corrupt motives, or to suit the interest of their employers, sometimes destroyed important papers and depositions, replacing them by false proceedings adapted to their judgements. To such an extent had the Courts lost public confidence that no party to a suit would credit them with original documents, and the pettiest case found its way to the highest Court, swelling law charges to the extent of double or triple of the amount claimed. A curious custom prevailed, enabling private persons to make money by laying information exposing the conduct of State servants. Such complaints were called “Khair-Khwai” and were entertained by the Criminal Courts without any reference to the department in which the accused was employed. The officials, in a body, being addicted to misappropriation of monies received by them in the course of official duty, easily avoided investigation by bribing the informers, and the Darbar itself, not being well prepared to check corruption, or recover monies embezzled by its servants, such misappropriations were committed with impunity, so that as the present day there is hardly an official who, if a proper enquiry was instituted, would not have to account for his misconduct. Receipts on account of unclaimed deposits and unclaimed property, as also fines and penalties, in certain cases, were seldom paid into the State Treasury. Judges of Sadar Adalats spent large sums without any reference to higher authority. The other day I found that tile Nazir of tile Jammed Court has c large of items aggregating Rs.2500, extending over several years past, without having been brought to book in the finance accounts of the State. The same practice prevailed with greater impunity in other departments; the whole being due to the absolute want of a proper system of audit and control. Tehsildars and other Revenue officers are known to be in the habit of imposing fines without recording any proceeding, and appropriating the receipts to themselves. Execution of decree is tedious, and, as no civil case is held to be finally decided until it is confirmed in appeal by the highest tribunal, which generally takes seven to ten years, execution is generally stayed till then.
I will here say a few words regarding the laws in force. There is a Penal Code, but there is no Code of Criminal Procedure. Similarly, there is a Code of Civil Procedure, but there is no substantive code of civil law, nor is there any law of limitation. The stamp and registration laws are grossly imperfect.
My critical review of the State Penal Code was submitted to the Resident at Gulmarg. It is sufficient to show that the penal law is a wretched specimen of barbarity and oppression. It gives the Courts power to entertain complaints against witches and sorcerers, on payment of a fee of Rs.50. The cow is held in the highest veneration, and no punishment is spared, however faulty the evidence may be. When a person is shown to have put a cow to death, his lands and property are confiscated, houses are brunt, permanent exile is ordered, and whole families are ruined. If the charge is proved by evidence, the culprit is sentenced to imprisonment for life. A person is bound to be sent to jail if he happens to yoke a cow to the plough, or otherwise take excessive hard work from that animal. It is a penal offence to kill animals for food or sell meat on certain days in each month. Adultery with a widow is punished with great severity, particularly if the woman is related to the adulterer, and a complaint of adultery may be lodged by any person, whether he is or is not in any way connected with her. There is clause in the Penal Code under which a Magistrate could take cognizance of an act or omission not specified therein, if such act or omission appears to him to be objectionable in the cause of society, and he may sentence the accused to a fine of Rs.25. This gives Tehsildars and Revenue officers ample opportunities of punishing people for disobedience of order, contempt of authority, and other supposed offenses.
A State defaulter is considered a criminal, he is kept in irons in the criminal jail on reduced diet, and is deported to distant and unhealthy stations, if he is unable to bribe the officials.
Kashmir under the British Administration. January 30, 1890
One of the official arguments in justification of the deposition of the Maharaja of Kashmir is the apparent indifference of the entire body of the Indian Princes in regard to this violent act of the Government. Those who advance such an argument altogether ignore the fact that Indian Princes are perfectly incapable of criticizing the conduct of the Paramount power. It is, however, not a fact that, slaves though they practically are they allowed this act of violence pass by without some sort of protest. Many Indian Princes were so powerfully moved by the incident that they did send secret messages to the Maharaja, deeply sympathizing with his hard lot. They advised him to remain strictly loyal to the British Crown, and at the same time lay his case before Lord Lansdowne, from whom they assured him he would get justice. But the Maharaja has already anticipated his friends, and sent his memorable letter to the Viceroy. Lord Lansdowne will thus see that, by denying justices to His Highness, he has not only bitterly disappointed the Maharaja of Kashmir, but also the Native Princes of India as a body.
That the deposition of the Maharaja caused immense sensation amongst the people of Kashmir and Jammu goes without saying. Indeed, an outbreak was seriously apprehended and the European officials of the State passed their time in great anxiety. General Marquis de Bourbel, the Chief Engineer of the State, who had access to all classes of the people, found their temper so bad, that he thought it prudent to send away his family from Kashmir to Sialkot. There is no doubt that a serious outbreak would have occurred, if the Maharaja and Raja Ram Singh had not supreme control over the army. A hint from them was enough for the Dogras to rise against the new order of things and commit horrible deeds. But both Maharaja Partab Singh and Raja Ram Singh preferred to trust to the sense of justice of the British Government, and they firmly restrained the Dogras from committing any act of violence. To what a length these Dogras are capable of going may be conceived from an incident, which happened at the end of October last. One of the policies of the present regime is the reduction of the Kashmir army. A regiment of about 1,000 sepoys was thus ordered to be disbanded. But their pay was heavily in arrears, and they refused to obey the order till their salaries were paid in full. The Commander of the regiment had however no money to pay, and he pointed to them the house of the Governor of Kashmir. They besieged the Governor’s house and threatened to kill him, and loot the bazaar if he would not pay them. But the treasury was empty, and the Governor was unable to oblige them. So the poor man had to run to the Residency and seek the help of the Resident. Colonel Nisbet however left for Jammu, leaving Captain Ramsay temporarily in charge of the Residency. Captain Ramsay was in a fix. He however advised the Governor to withdraw the order of disbandment at once, and pacify the troops by reinstating them. This was done, and a serious outbreak prevented.
The above incident brings one fact prominently before the public – the utter emptiness of the Kashmir treasury. Indeed, the financial collapse of the State is almost complete. And we shall show by a few facts, how this has been brought about. First of all, highly paid officials have been thrust upon the State. For instance, the three paid Members of the Council are Bhagram, Suraj Kaul, and Sheikh Ghulam Mohi-uddin. The first to get Rs.1,500 per mensem, and the last Rs.800. And yet Bhagram and Suraj Kaul each got only Rs.600 while Extra Assistant Commissioners in British India, and Sheikh Gulam only Rs.300. But not only do these Members receive high salaries, they have been each given an Assistant or Naib on a pay of Rs. 300 per months All these Assistants are creatures of Colonel Nisbet, whom he has imported from the British territory and through them he manages to keep his control over the Members. One of these Naibs or Assistants is a Gurkha named Thapa. Just fact a Nepalese thrust upon the people of Kashmir, not a word of whose language he can speak or understand. Besides the pay, these Assistants are allowed free quarters. The Governor of Kashmir has also an Assistant or Naib of the above description, one Afzal Khan, who is a well-known creature of Colonel Nisbet. But if Colonel Nisbet is filling the State with his creatures, so is Raja Amar Singh procuring berths for his own favourtes. The old Vakil got Rs.66 per month. He has been dismissed, and a railway man put in his place on a salary of Rs.500 per mensum: A photographer, who previously taught Raja Amar Singh photography, has been appointed as Superintendent of the printing press on a pay of Rs.500. The old officer of the Toshakhana, who got Rs.200, has been dismissed, and the father of head servant of Amar Singh appointed to the post on a salary of Rs.600. The loaves and fishes of the State are being thus divided mainly to the creatures of Colonel Nisbet and Amar Singh. Besides many Europeans have been imported into the State on high pay. The Survey Officer, the Chief Engineer, and two or three Assistant Engineers, and the head of the Forest Department are Europeans. The contractors for Jhelum Valley road (the Murree road) and their subordinates are also Europeans. And this road alone devours half a lakh every month, perhaps more. Need anybody now wonder why there is no money in the treasury?
Add to the above the costly hobbies of the Colonel Nisbet. One of these hobbies is the waterwork at Jammu. The treasury was empty, but yet he must prosecute the work and leave a name behind. So he introduced two Engineer friends into the State and asked them to make an estimate of cost and undertake the work. But he was not yet satisfied. He promised them a reward of Rs.10, 000 if they would finish the work in 6 months. The result was that the engineers employed men and purchased materials at exorbitant rates so as to finish the work in time, and get the reward. They finished the work and got the reward, but they have left a veritable white elephant upon the Kashmir State. The mere cost of pumping up the water is Rs.100 per day, or nearly Rs.40, 000 per annum. The water might have been brought down from a higher level, and the cost reduced to almost nil. But the engineers must finish the work in 6 months – the prospect of a reward of Rs.10, 000 was before them. ‘o they had no time to search and find out a reservoir on the top of some hill from where the water might come down of its own gravity. And they therefore dug out a well in the bed of the river, and the water has to be raised from there to a height of some 300 feet at the enormous cost stated above. Nor is this all. Wretched water-piles, with old-fashioned stands, have been introduced. They have been constantly bursting forth, and deluging the streets with water, and waterwork at Jammu has proved altogether a strange phenomenon to the people. And one of the Engineers, who were entrusted with the charge of this water-work, has been appointed for the Kashmir road on Rs.1, 000 per month. Colonel Nisbet is about to confer the same blessing upon the people of Srinagar at an equally enormous cost. Indeed the water-works there have been already commenced. But there is no immediate necessity for good water at Srinagar. The Jhelum water is quite enough for the purpose. But, we believe, the water-work at Srinagar will also be soon finished by Colonel Nisbet, and the treasury still further exhausted, and the State burdened with another white elephant. If Srinagar wants anything it is the cleaning of its street, and not water. But while such is the wretched condition of the finance of the Kashmir State, the British Government is going to thrust four British Officers upon the State, with the object of organizing the Kashmir troops. Whether they will be placed under the direction of Raja Ram Singh, who is the Commander in Chief of the Kashmir army, we do not know. But it is not likely that these British officers will ever agree serve to under a Native Commander. We also see that Lieutenant-Colonel Neville Chamberlain has been posted as military to the Council. It is needless to point out that these officers will cost a good deal of money to the State.
Here are a few more items of Expenditure. A new Residency House is about to be built at Jammu at a cost of one lakh. The Resident has already got a house there. But he must have another at the cost of the State. As Jammu and Sialkot have been joined by Railway, there is absolutely no necessity for sucl1 a palace at all at Jammu. And then money is being spent like water upon the Lalmundi palace and Residency houses, in expectation of Lord Lansdowne’s visit to Kashmir in March next. And lastly, the building of the Gilgit Residency which being vigorously pushed on, is a costly affair. Even such things as flag, staffs, furniture, etc. are being sent to Gilgit at the cost of the State. And the following cutting from an Anglo-Indian paper shows how Captain Durand is making himself merry at the expense of the poor people of Kashmir, and how he has been dealing with the subjects of the Maharaja as if they were British subjects: “Captain Durand, the British political Agents at Gilgit, is reported to have recently invited the chiefs of Punyal, Hunza and Nagar to come in person or to send suitable representatives to Gilgit to be present at a Darbar. Raja Saddar All Khan of Hunza deputed his half-brother, Mohammad Nasim Khan and the Raja of Nagar his eldest son, Raja Uhzar Khan, while the Punyal Chiefs, who are subjects of the Maharaja of Kashmir, came in person. A Darbar was held by the British Agent, with whom were the Governor of Gilgit and the General Commanding the Kashmir troops. and the establishment of the Gilgit Agency was formally announced. The Chiefs remained in Gilgit as guests for a week, the time being filled up with horse-racing, sports and polo matches in which the people of the country and the Kashmir sepoys freely joined
Resident to Amar Singh. April 27, 1891
I am directed by His excellency the Viceroy and GovernorGeneral in Council to communicate for the information of the Kashmir State Council the following observations regarding the arrangements which the Government of India consider necessary for the exercise of Criminal and Civil jurisdiction within the territories of His Highness the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir.
2. The Government of India consider that the Regulations published with the assent of His Highness the late Maharaja in Foreign Department Notification No. 615-P. of the 28th May 1873 are not entirely suited to the present time. Since the publication of those Regulations considerable changes have been effected within His Highness’ territories, and year by year the number of persons visiting Kashmir increases and the opening of the Jhelum Valley Road will doubtless attract more and more British capital into the valley of Kashmir. On the other hand the Government of India are glad to notice that there has been considerable improvement of late in the machinery for the administration of justice in Jammu and Kashmir, and that if the late Council continue to devote attention to this important question, it is believed that the Courts of the State will in time command the confidence of the general public.
3. Inasmuch as the Governor-General in Council possesses full personal jurisdiction over subjects of Her Majesty, who may happen to be within the territories of the Maharaja, it would not ordinarily be necessray to peaus before issuing such orders concerning them as might appear from time to time to be necessary. But the exisiting Regulations having been published with the assent of the late Maharaja, and therefore, out of courtesy to His Highness the present Maharaja and the Kashmir State Council, the Government of India have desired me to communicate to the Council their intention of making alterations, suitable to the existing conditions, in the present procedure.
4. The changes that will be made are embodied in the accompanying notification, and may be summarized as follows:
(a) Arrangements are made for investing the Resident in Kashmir and his Assistants with the necessary powers for enquiry into or trial of cases against
1. Europeans of any nationality other than British.
2. Christians of European descents
3. Native Indian subjects of Her Majesty, such Indian subjects being either merely visiting the territories of His Highness or acting as servants of an European British subject, or
4. British subjects accused of having committed offenses conjointly with European British subjects.
(b) The trial of Native Indian subjects who ordinarily dwell or carry on business or personally work for gain within the said territories will ordinarily rest with the Courts of the Durbar. At the same time it is to be distinctly understood that any such person convicted by such Courts has the right of making a presentation to the Resident in Kashmir, and that if that officer considers there is ground for interference, his representation on the subject to the Durbar will be attended to.
Civil (d) Arrangements are made for investing the Resident and his Assistants with powers to dispose of Civil suits in which
Both parties are subjects of Her Majesty.
The defendant is an European British subject.
The defendant is a Native Indian subject of Her Majesty and at the time of the commencement of the suit does not ordinarily dwell or carry on business or personally work for gain within the territories of the Maharaja.
(e) All other suits between subjects of Her Majesty on the one hand and subjects of the Maharaja on the other hand will ordinarily be triable in the Courts of the State.
5. With regard to clauses (a) and (d) above, I am to request that the Kashmir State Council will favour me with am assurance that they will enforce the attendance of witnesses being subjects of the Maharaja and residing in his territories regarding whom processes have been issued by the Courts thus. constituted by the Governor-General in Council.
(a) Again, in regard to clause (e), I am directed to suggest to the State Council that, now that they have secured the services of officials who have had an opportunity of acquiring: a certain amount of judicial and Magesterial experience in British India, it would be wise to issue orders that all cases, Civil and Criminal, in which British subjects are concerned, should be tried before specified Courts in Jammu and Srinagar, respectively and that the officers appointed to such Courts should invariably be chosen from among the best trained officials in the service of the State. By this means it is hoped the Courts of the State will command the confidence of British and Indian traders, and
(b) increased capital will be attracted into the country.
State Council Supplementary Rules of business. September 5, 1896
Petitions in respect of Revenue and Judicial cases shall be ordinarily presented to the Court or Officer concerned, under the regulations in force, all miscellaneous petitions presented to His Highness the Maharaja being, however, referred by him to the Member-in-Charge of the Department concerned for disposal or report, if necessary.
2. His Highness the Maharaja, may send for Proceedings finally disposed of by a Member in Chambers, and if he sees reason for not concurring in the decision or order given, may refer the matter to the Council, this rule shall not, however apply to regular Revenue and Judicial cases, pending or disposed of, for which a special procedure is laid down in the existing rules of business, and State Council Circular No: 47 dated 15th February 1890 under Resolution No: 15 dated 15.2.1890 and under Resolution No: 51 dated 18.1.1900.
3. Every Member-in-Charge of a Department shall prepare a synopsis of the business conducted by him outside the Council, showing the important matters disposed of by him’ the action taken by him on suggestions made or Irshads issued by Highness the Maharaja, and the appointments or transfers made to posts exceeding Rs.50 a month.
4. The synopsis referred to in Rule 3, shall be laid before the Maharaja for his perusal and signature, and shall than be sent to the Resident along with the Proceedings of the State Council. 5. No Khillats or rewards to State Officials shall be granted except on the recommendation of the Member-in-Charge of the Department concerned.
6. Khillats and donations given to persons not being officials of the State by direct Irshad of His Highness the Maharaja shall be limited to a value of not exceeding Rs, 12,000 per annum.
7. No grants of Nazul Property and alienation of State Property on Nazrana and otherwise shall be made except by a formal Resolution of Council, passed in consultation with the Resident.
8. It shall be competent to a Member-in Charge of a Department to reserve any question for an expression of the views of the Resident, the Council in all such cases refraining from finally disposing of the case until it is furnished with them.
9. All dismissals shall be invariably regulated by- the procedure laid down and sanctioned by the State Council under its Rules.
10. No. expulsion from State territory shall be restored to except after consultation with the Resident.
All important papers, or, if necessary, copies of such’ papers relating to references entered in the Agenda, shall be sent to His Highness the Maharaja, a few days or as long as possible before the meeting.
Sd/- (Amar Singh) 5th September, 1896.
State Council Supplementary Rules of business. November 5, 1899
Read Resident in Kashmir’s letter No. 6575 dated 29th October, 1899 suggesting the distribution of different departments to be controlled by members of the State Council.
Resolved unanimously that the following distribution of the departments proposed by His Highness Maharaja be sanctioned and that the members concerned be informed accordingly.
Vice – President to Administer:
1. Foreign Department.
2. Military Department including stables, Baghikhana, Telegraph and post.
5. To shakhanas both ginsi and Reserve and museum.
6. Shikar preserves and game laws.
Revenue Member to be In Charge Of:
2. Public Works Department.
6. State Property in British India.
Judicial Member to Control:
7. Council Secretariat.
Restoration of Powers to Maharaja Pratap Singh. 1905
LORD CURZON’S SPEECH
Your Highness, Three times since I came to India as Viceroy have been privileged as representative of the Government to instal an Indian Prince, but have never before enjoyed the pleasure of conferring an enhancement or restitution of powers upon a ruling Chief, and in the annals of the Foreign office we can discover no record of such a ceremony ever having taken place. The present occasion is therefore unique in its character, as well as agreeable in its relation both to the Prince who is the recipient of the compliment and to the people who share in the honour that is being conferred upon their ruler. This ceremony may be looked upon from a threefold point of view either as typing the policy of the paramount power, or as affecting the fortunes of the Maharaja or the destines of his State.
BRITISH POLICY TOWARDS NATIVE STATES
Let me say a word upon all those aspects of the case. The position which is occupied by the British Crown towards the feudatory princes in India is one of the greatest responsibility that is anywhere enjoyed by a sovereign authority. Some times it may impose upon that authority unwelcome or distasteful obligations. But far more often it is the source of a relationship which is honourable and advantageous to both, and which associates them in the bonds of a political union without any parallel for its intimacy or confidence in the world. As one who has represented the sovereign power for an unusual length of time in India I can speak with some right to be heard when I say that anything that enhance the security or adds to the dignity of the Indian princes is above all things welcome the British L Government. Titles and honour and salutes it is in the power of the supreme authority in many countries to bestow, and it is from no vain or childish instinct that the world in all ages has attached value to these emblems or rewards. But surely amongst them the most dignified distinction to offer and the proudest to receive must be the augmentation of governing powers bestowed upon a ruler, to whom they are given not as a matter of course, but because he has been merited them by faithful devotion to the intrest of the people and by loyal attachment to the paramount power. Such an act is even more congenial to the latter if it marks the rescission of an attitude that may have been called for in different circumstances but that might be thought to carry with it the suspicion of distrust.
It gives me, therefore the highest pleasure to be here today to confer this particular honour upon one of the foremost of the Indian Princes. But the pleasure is enhanced by the circumstances of the State and of the ruler to whom it is offered I know not why it is, but the State of Kashmir, so fertile in all its resources, has always been more productive of strange rumours than any other native State in India. Thus in Lords Lansdowne’s day it was widely circulated that the State was about to be taken over by the Crown. Similarly a few years ago, at the very time when I was first considering with Your Highness the restoration of your powers. it was actually spread abroad that I was discussing with you a territorial exchange by which the Kashmir Valley should pass into the hands of the Government of India and that the British officials were even to come after the manner of the old Moghuls and spend their summer at Srinagar or Gulmarg. Only the other day a fresh crop of silly rumours had to be formally denied, namely that in handing back to you the first place in the government of your State, we had imposed conditions as regards the tenure of property by Europeans in Kashmir for which there was not one word foundation. Your Highness, is not the action which I am taking today the most eloquent commentary upon these absured fictions? Does it not testify in the most emphatic manner to the rectitude and good faith of the British Government? If excused for a different policy, for a policy of escheat or forefeiture in native States, were required, History will supply cases in which they have sometimes not been lacking. But we have deliberately set ourselves to carry out opposite political theory, namely to retain the native States of India intact, to prolong and fortify their separate existence, and to safeguard the prestige and authority of their rulers. Such has been our Attitude towards Kashmir ever since the end of the first Sikh War when we made over to your grandfather, already the ruler of the State of Jammu, the much more valuable possession of Kashmir. Since that day there has been no departure from this policy, and there has been no more striking evidence of it than the step which I am taking today and which I consider it my good fortune that before I leave India I am in a position to take. It shows conclusively, if any further proof were required that it is our desire to see Kashmir and Jammu a single and compact State in the hands of a ruler qualified to represent its dignity and authority before all India.
Your Highness, there is a third reason why i have found this act so agreeable, and that is personal to yourself. Since I arrived in India when you were the first ruling chief to greet me upon the steps of Government House at Calcutta we have met on many occasions and have constantly corresponded. You have been my guest at Calcutta, and it is only by a -series of accidents first the flood in 1903, and then the delay in my return from England last year, and finally the circumstances attending my departure in the present autumn-that have prevented me from enjoying the princely hospitality that you have so frequently pressed upon me at Srinagar. However, though these opportunities have been wanting there have not been lacking many others not merely of acquiring your Highness’s friendship but of forming a personal regard for yourself and a High opinon of these qualities of head and heart which -will now find an even wider scope for their exercise. I feel that I am the indirect means of honouring a prince who will so conduct himself as to be worthy of honour, and who will never cause my successors to take the step which I have taken.
ADVANTAGES AND IMPROVEMENTS IN KASHMIR
The State of Kashmir is indeed a noble and enviable dominion of which one would wish to be the ruler. Its natural beauties have made it famous alike in history and romance, and they draw to it visitors from the most distant parts. It possesses a laborious population. Its industrial resources are already growing rapidly, and are capable of immense additional expansion. Its accounts have been placed in excellent order; its land settlement has been effected on equitable lines; its revenue are mounting by leaps and bounds; it is about to be connected with India by a railway and will thus lose the landlocked condition which has often been the source of economic suffering, without, I hope, sacrificing the picturesque detachment that renders it attractive to visitors. Your Highness will remember that this railway was my first official suggestion to you at Calcutta in January, 1899, nd though nearly seven years have since elapsed I am pleased to think that the alignments and gauge are now fixed. Finally, your State possesses a mountain frontier uneqalled in diversity of race and character, of natural beauty and political interest, and towards its protection you make the largest contribution of any State in India to imperial defence. I allude to the Kashmir Imperial Service Troops of which your Highness is so justly proud, and whose service to the Empire has already won for your Highness the exalted rank of a British General. Such are the features and the Prospects of the State of which your Highness is the ruler, and of which you are now given the supreme and responsible charge.
NATURE OF THE NEW POWER
Henceforward the State Council which for the last sixteen years has administered the affairs of the State will cease to exist, and its power will be transferred under proper guarantees to your self. You will be assisted in the discharge of these duties by your brother Raja Sir Amar Singh, who has already occupied so prominent a position in the administration and who will be your chief minister and right-hand man. I am convinced that he will devote his great natural abilities to your faithful service, and it will be your inclination as well as your duty to repose in him a full measure of your trust. In all important matters you will be able to rely upon the counsel and support of the British Resident, who, owing to the peculiar conditions of Kashmir, has played so important a part in the recent development of the country and whose experience and authority will always be at your command and will assist to maintain the credit of the State.
COUNCIL AND EXHORTATION
I feel convinced that your Highness will exercise your powers in a manner a that will justify the Government of India for their confidence and that will be gratifying to your people and creditable to yourself. You rule a State in which the majority of your subjects are of different religion from the ruling aste, and in which they are deserving of just and liberal consideration. You rule a State which is much before the eyes of the world and is bound to maintain the highest standard of efficiency and self respect. Finally, you rule a State which has a great and splended future before it, and which should inspire you with no higher or no lower aim than to be worthy of the position of its ruler, and thus to add fresh lustre to the proud title of Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir.
New Arrangements for the Administration of Kashmir by Resident in Kashmir. May 1906
Note on the new arrangements for the administration of the Jammu and Kashmir State.
1. The State Council is abolished.
2. The powers of the State Council will be assumed by His Highness the Maharaja on the following conditions
i. That His Highness will exercise his powers under the advice of the Resident; that he will take no step of importance, without consulting him; and that he will follow his advice whenever it may be offered;
ii. That the annual budget will be prepared and passed in consultation with the Resident, and that expenditure not provided for therein shall only be incurred after his previous approval. The previous sanction of the Resident shall also be ‘necessary to any reappropriation when the sum to be reappropriated from or to any single head of expenditure amounts to or exceeds Rs.10,000 either by itself, or when added to previous reappropriations made during the same year to or from the same head:
Chief Revenue Officer.
Chief Judicial Officer.
Chief Engineer, Public Works Department.
Engineer-in-Chief. Railway Department.
Engineer-in-Chief, Electric Engineering Department.
Superintendent of Customs and Excise.
Director of Sericulture.
iii. that the officials of the Kashmir administration holding the appointments named above shall only be appointed or removed with the concurrence of the Government of India;
iv. that the Maharaja shall appoint a Minister with the previous approval of the Government of India, by whom the business of all departments shall be laid before him;
v. that each departmental budget estimate shall be submitted to the Maharaja who, after consolation with the Maharaja and the Resident as in (ii) above, shall submit it for the final sanction and approval of His Highness;
vi. that subject to the proceeding rules, His Highness the Maharaja shall have power to veto or alter any orders passed by the head of a department, and may through the Minister call for an revise any proceedings in any department of the administration;
vii. that all appointments and removals of gazetted officers shall be made by order of His Highness the Maharaja on due cause shown;
viii. that an English translation of the proceedings and orders of the Maharaja or the Minister in the following classes of cases shall be forwarded fortnightly for the Resident’s information:
a. orders modifying the annual budget for the year as finally passed by the Maharaja;
b. orders involving alienation of the revenue or remission of taxation;
c. orders involving the appointment or removal of gazetted officers;
d. orders effecting the new Railway or Electrical Engineering Department;
e. orders passed on the assessment reports of the Settlement Department, or on their reports on Rev rue-free Holdings, Jagirs, Muafis, Inams, & c;
f. orders passed on the proposals made by the Sericulture Committee or the head of the Sericulture Department;
g. orders passed in regard to annual or periodical contracts given by the State;
h. orders appertaining to the administration of the frontier.
i. That the existing arrangements in Regard to the allowances enjoyed from the State revenue by the Maharaja shall continue unchanged;
ii. The Minister shall have general control of all Departments, and be the channel of communication for them between the Residency and His Highness the Maharaja;
The appointment of Minister in charge of the Foreign Department will be created with the proviso that the officer selected for the post shall
iii. S be acceptable to both His Highness the Maharaja and his Prime Minister;
The rules of business already in force end ‘-standing orders” for the
iv. Army shall be adhered to until any necessity for their modification is shown, with the exception that all matters hitherto referred to the Council shall in future be refer- Or red to the Durbar through the Prone Minister;
v. No existing Resolution of the State Council shall be cancelled or modified until final orders to that effect have been passed by the Durbar in consultation with the Resident; and The powers of Members in charge of, and Head of Departments and the regulation of work between the various Departments have already been clearly defined in State Resolutions, and no change shall be made until the necessity for such change has been established.
Transactions of Business of the Council Memorandum Maharaja Pratap Singh. 1906
(Extract) Consequent on the abolition of Council the following arrangements as to the conduct of work by the Ministers and the Chief Ministers are hereby laid down:
The Ministers shall for the present continue to exercise the same delegated authority in respect of the various departments under their control, which they used to exercise as Members of Council during the existence of the State Council, and shall submit such matters for the orders of His Highness the Maharaja as were submitted to that administrative body for dicision Such matters shall be submitted through the Chief Minister accompanied by a clear memorandum on the case and the connected files. His Highness may, if he considers necessary make verbal enquiries from the Minister about a matter thus submitted to him, by calling upon the Minister concerned to to attend at a special time.
The Chief Minister shall be the channel of communication between the Ministers and His Highness the Maharaja. All references received by the Chief Minister from the different Ministers shall be forwarded by him to His Highness the Maharaja for orders, together with his own opinion on the proposals as made by the different Ministers. When submitting the files to His Highness the Maharaja, the Chief Minister will forward with them an abstract of the case which shall be prepared in the office of the Chief Minister in form appended hereto. A chalan giving the details of the cases thus sent up should also be forwarded. This chalan shall be signed by the Private Secretary to His Highness and returned to the Chief Minister’s Office. On the day following the one on which the papers are thus received, they will be produced before His Highness and the Chief Minister by the Private Secretary at the time fixed for the transaction of such business. The items of business in which His Highness has only to express an agreement with the Chief Minister’s views shall have a note made to the effect in that statement, while the references in which His Highness entertains a different opinion shall be discussed -with the Chief Minister, and their final opinion arrived at shall form the basis of His Highness’s order which shall on its being passed be recorded and note thereof duly entered in the appropriate column in the said statement. Such cases when -finally disposed of by His Highness shall also be returned to the Chief Minister, together with the statement above referred to, setting forth the orders of His Highness on the references submitted to him. The Chief Minister shall then retain in his office the abstract of each case sent up by him, his own note of opinion, and the original order of His Highness, and shall communicate the orders passed on the references by His Highness to the Ministers concerned, returning to them at the same time the original files. His Highness reserves to himself the function of seeking the advice of the Resident in Kashmir in matters of importance, particularly where difference of opinion is involved, in such manner as he may consider desirable.
The fortnightly abstract of proceedings to be sent up to the Resident shall be prepared in the Chief Minister’s Office and forwarded to the Residency by the Chief Minister.
Letter from Chief Minister Jammu and Kashmir State to Maharaja Pratap Singh. July 2,1919
In accordance with the direction contained in Your Highness’s letter dated the 28th January 1919, I communicated officially to the Resident in Kashmir Your Highness’s request for the grant of full and unrestricted powers in the control of the administration of the State and asked him kindly to move His Excellency the Viceroy to accord his sympathetic and favourable consideration to it. The Resident laid Your Highness’s request before His Excellency the Viceroy and has communicated His Excellency’s decision thereon in his letter No. 180-C dated the 28th May, 1919.
I laid this letter before Your Highness and explained its contents. In accordance with Your Highness’s verbal orders the changes sanctioned by His Excellency are explained below:
(a) Method followed in respect of the tendering of advice by the Resident in matters of importance. The procedure in vogue is that a proposal is first submitted to Your Highness for sanction. If it is sanctioned by Your Highness, it is referred to the Resident for approval. In future the procedure will be that it will first be laid before Your Highness. If it is approved or sanctioned by Your Highness, it will be referred to the Resident by the Chief Minister demi-officially for advice. The case will be again laid before His in Highness for final orders after the Resident’s advice has been obtained. The present method will thus be altered so as to ensure that the Resident’s advice will in all cases be obtained before and not after a proposal is submitted to Your Highness for sanction.
(b) Submission of fortnightly synopsis of proceedings and orders passed by Your Highness. In accordance with the condition (viii) of Lord Curzon’s Kharita dated the 30th August 1905, a synopsis of orders passed by Your Highness in certain cases is to be forwarded to the Resident fortnightly. The Government of India have agreed that orders passed under headings (a), (c), (d), (e), (f) and (g) need no longer be reported, provided that any orders passed in these classes of cases, which are contrary to or involve any important established principle, are, communicated by the Chief Minister to the Resident, but orders passed under (b) and (h), viz., (1) orders appertaining to the frontier, should continue to be reported.
(c) Preparation of Budget
The holding of the annual Budget meetings will be discontinued. The Budget estimates will in future be submitted to the Chief Minister who, after consulting Your Highness, will take the advice of the Resident with regard to individual items included in the Budget will not be required if the expenditure is devoted to the purpose for which the allotments are made. Your Highness will also be able to sanction expenditure up to a limit of Rs. 20,000!- on the entertainment of Ruling Chiefs and other distinguished guests visiting Kashmir which cannot at present be incurred without Resident’s approval.
It may be added that subject to the limitations imposed by the first five conditions laid down in Lord Curzon’s Kharita dated the 20th August 1905 as subsequently modified; Your Highness possesses and can exercise powers of veto, revision and review in all cases. It may also be stated that the Government have sanctioned an increase in Your Highness Privy Purse allowance from 101akhs per annum with effect from the Baisakh, the commencement of the current financial year.
If Your Highness approves, the revised procedure will be introduced forthwith. Approved. The action may please be taken accordingly
Sd/ Pratap Singh, Maharaja Lieutenant General, G.C.S. I., G.C.I.E., G.B.E., L.L.D., 23-7-1919.
Regulation No. XLVI Jammu and Kashmir State Civil Courts Regulation. 1921
3. There shall continue to be a High Court for the Jammu and Kashmir State.
4. The High Court shall be deemed for the purpose of all enactments for the time being in force to be the highest Civil Court of appeal or revision, subject to the control of, and the judicial powers exercised by, His Highness the Maharaja Sahib Bahadur.
5. The High Court shall make rules for the transaction of the work of the High Court.
6. (a) The High Court shall have a Registrar and shall have the power to appoint such Ministerial Officers as may be necessary for the administration of justice by the Court and for the exercise and performance of the powers and duties conferred and imposed on it by this Regulation. (b) The Registrar and the Ministerial Officers appointed under this section shall exercise such powers and discharge such duties of non-judicial or quasi-judicial nature as the High Court may direct. (c) Any Ministerial Officer may be suspended or dismissed from his office by order of the High Court.
7. (a) The general superintendence and control over all other Civil Courts shall be vested in, and all such Courts shall be subordinate to the High Court. (b) The High Court shall from time to, time visit and inspect the proceedings of the Courts subordinate to the High Court and shall give such directions in matters not provided for by law as may be necessary to secure the due administration of justice.
8. (A) The High Court may make rules consistent with this Regulation and any other enactments for the time being in force:
a. providing for the translation of any papers filed in the High Court and copying and printing any such papers or translations. and requiring from the persons at whose Instance or on whose behalf they are filed payment of the expenses thereby incurred;
b. declaring what persons shall be permitted to practice as petition-writers in the Courts of the State, regulating the conduct of business by persons so practicing, and determining the authority by which broachers of rules under this clause shall be tried;
c. determining in whet eases legal practitioners shall be permitted to address the Court in English;
d. prescribing forms for seals to be used by those Courts;
e. regulating the procedure in cases where any person is entitled to inspect a record of any such Court or obtain a copy of the same, and prescribing the fees payable by such persons, for searches, inspections and copies;
f. conferring and imposing on the Ministerial Officers of the subordinate Courts such powers and duties of a non-judicial or quasi-judicial nature as it thinks fit, and regulating the mode in which powers and duties so conferred and imposed shall be exercised and performed;
g. prescribing forms for such books, entries, statistics and accounts as it thinks necessary to be kept, made or compiled in those Courts or submitted to any authority;
h. providing for the inspection of those Courts and the supervision of the working thereof; i. regulating the exercise of the control vested in the High Court by section 35 (4) of this Regulation; and
j. regulating all such matters as it may think fit, with a view to promoting the efficiency of the judicial and Ministerial Officers of those Courts, and maintaining proper discipline among those officers.
(B) Whoever breaks any rule made under clause (b) shall be punished with a fine which may extend to fifty rupees.
3. (1) The High Court shall comply with such requisitions as may be made by His Highness for certified copies, or, extracts from records of the Court and the Courts subordinate thereto.
4. (1) The High Court, wren sitting as a Court of Civil judicature, shall take evidence and record judgments and orders in such manner as it, by rule, directs, and may frame forms for any proceeding in the Court in the exercise of its civil jurisdiction. (2) The following provisions of Code of Civil Procedure shall not apply to the High Court in the exercise of its original civil jurisdiction, namely, rule 3 of Order X, rule 5 to 9 (both inclusive). rule 11, rule 13 to 15 (both inclusive) and rule 16 of Order XVIII (so far as it relates to the manner of taking evidence), rules 1, 3, 4 and 5 of Order XX and so much of rule 7 of Order XXXIII as relates to the making of a memorandum.
5. The High Court has and shall have power to remove and to try and determine as a Court of extraordinary original jurisdiction any suit being of falling within the jurisdiction of any Court subject to its superintendence when High Court shall thinly proper to do so, either on the agreement of the parties to that effect or for purpose of justice.
6. The High Court shall have such power and authority in relation to the granting of probates of last wills and testaments and letters of administration of the goods, chattles, credits and all other effects whatsoever of persons dying intestate whether within or without the State as are or may be conferred on it by any law for the time being in force.
k. Besides the High Court, the Courts of Small Causes established under the small Cause Courts Regulation, and the Courts established under any other enactment for the time being in force, there shall be the following classes of Civil Courts, namely:
The Court of the District Judge, also called the District Court;
The Court of the Additional Judge;
(3) The Court of Subordinate Judge; and
(4) The Court of the Munsiff.
33. (1) Save as otherwise provided by any enactment for the time being in force, an appeal from a decree or order of a District Judge or Additional Judge exercising original jurisdiction, shall lie to the High Court. (2) An appeal shall not lie to the High Court from a decree or order of an Additional Judge in any case in which the decree or order had been made by the District Judge, an appeal would not lie to that Court.
1. Save as aforesaid an appeal from a decree or order of a Subordinate Judge shall lie: (a) to the District Judge where the value of the original suit in which the decree or order was made did not exceed two thousand and five hundred rupees; and (b) to the High Court in any other case.
2. Save as aforesaid, an appeal from a decree or order of a Munsiff shall lie to the District Judge.
3. Where the function of receiving any appeals which lie to the District Judge under sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) has been assigned to an Additional Judge, the appeals may be preferred to the Additional Judge.
4. An appeal from the order of District Judge on the appeal from the order of the Munsiff under section 25 shall lie to the High Court if a further appeal from the order of the District Judge is allowed by the law for the time being in force.
a. The High Court may, with the previous sanction of His Highness, and by notification in the State Gazette, direct that appeals lying to the District Court under sub-section (2) from all or any of the decrees or orders passed in an original suit by any Munsiff shall be preferred to such Subordinate Judge as may be mentioned in the notification, and the appeals shall thereupon be preferred accordingly, and the Court of such Subordinate Judge shall be deemed to be a District Court for the purposes of all appeals so preferred.
Sri Pratap Reforms Regulation Reserved Subjects. 1922
In exercise of the powers under Section 6 of the Sri Pratap Reforms Regulation 1918, l hereby direct that Military matters “shall be laid before me by the Commander-in-Chief and the following matters with the opinion of the Member-in-Charge of -the department concerned for my final disposal; all others being laid before me in Council:
1. Matters bearing upon the relations between His Highness the Maharaja and the British Government and Feudatory Chiefs within the State.
2. Matters relating to prerogatives, rights, powers, duties or privileges of His Highness the Maharaja or his successors .
3. Matters relating to the management and control of the household of His Highness the Maharaja or his successors.
4. Matters relating to the rights, privileges, easements, assignments and gifts and allowances of the Ruling family of the J&K State.
Matters regulated by treaties or formal agreements now in force or which may hereafter be entered into by His Highness the Maharaja with the British Government and Feudatory Chiefs of the J&K State
Sri Pratap Reforms Regulation No. IV of 1922
I accord sanction to Sri Pratap Reforms Regulation, first part, as a tentative measure for one year. It will come into force from the date the first Council meeting of the Executive “Council sits. This order should be published in the State Gazette. Whereas, in view of the stage of evolution which the Administration of the J&K State has reached, it is expedient to amend its constitution so as to increase the efficiency of the Administration and to afford the means for the association therewith of subjects of the State, it is hereby enacted as follows:
(l) This Regulation may be called the Sri Pratap Reforms. Regulation, 1 9l 8.
(2) It shall come into force on and from the date to be fixed in this behalf by His Highness the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir.
CONSTITUTION OF THE J & K STATE COUNCIL
2. From the date of commencement of this Regulation or from such other date thereafter, as may be specified by His Highness the Maharaja, and Executive Council, hereinafter called “The Jammu and Kashmir State Council” shall be establistsd in the State.
3. (l) The Jammu and Kashmir State Council shall consist the following Members: Commander-in-Chief and Senior Members, Foreign Member, Revenue Member, Law Member, Home Member. Member for commerce and Industry. (2) Raja Sir Harisingh, the Commander-in-Chief, shall have precedence over the other Members of the Council, the Foreign Member shall stand next, and the other Members according to seniority.
4. His Highness the Maharaja shall be the president of the Jammu and Kashmir State Council.
5. The J&K State Council shall also have a Secretary and such establishment as may be deemed necessary.
All matters which, under the existing constitution, require orders of His Highness the Maharaja and cannot other-wise be dealt with by any Member or any other authority under powers delegated to him by virtue of any law, rule, regulation or practice sanctioned by His Highness, shall . in future be submitted to His Highness in the J&K State Council, with the exception of the subjects reserved specially for final disposal by His Highness.
High Court Code of Civil Procedure
(Extract) 100. (1) Save where otherwise expressly provided in the body of this Code or by any other law for the time being in force, as appeal shall lie to the High Court from every decree passed in appeal by any Court subordinate to the High Court on any of the following grounds, namely
• The Decision being contrary to law or to some usage having the force of law;
• The decision having failed to determine some material issue of law or usage having the force of law;
• A substantial error or defect in the procedure provided by this Code of by any other law for the time being in force, which may possibly have produced error or defect in the decision of the case upon the merit; and
• The decision having varied cancelled or reversed the decision of the Court of first instance, where the subject matter of the suit exceeds two hundred rupees in value. (2) An appeal may lie under this section from an appellate decree passed exparte. • No second appeal shall lie except on the grounds mentioned in section 100.
No second appeal shall lie in any suit of the nature cognizable by Courts of small Causes, when the amount or value of the subject matter of the original suit does not exceed five hundred rupees.
Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir State Council. 1924
The Council shall consist of the following Members:
1. Commander-in-Chief and senior and foreign Member.
2. Revenue Member.
3. Home and Law Member.
4. Public Works Member.
5. Finance and Police Member.
6. Member for Commerce and Industries.
2. The Council shall have a Secretary and necessary establishment.
3. Except as provided for in Article 5 below, the Senior Member, the member next in order of the seniority present at the meeting shall preside.
4. A quorum of the Council shall consist of four Members.
5. With the exception of the subjects enumerated below which are reserved for the Commands of His Highness all matters shall be dealt with by the Council and the proceedings of the Council shall be submitted to His Highness by the Council Secretary for sanction, no resolution being brought -into force until the sanction of His Highness has been obtained. If His Highness disagrees with any resolution he will inform the senior Member of the time and place at which the Council should attend and discuss the case in question in the presence of His Highness. If after discussion His Highness still disagrees, he will there upon exercise in Council his prerogatives of veto And decision in the case shall be as commanded by His Highness.
6. In the Reserved subjects enumerated below, the following procedure shall be adopted:
1. Military matters shall be submitted to His Highness for his commands by the Commander-in-Chief
2. Cases connected with other Reserved subjects shall be submitted to His Highness for his commands by the Member concerned through the senior Member. Appeals which lie to His Highness under section 34, 35, 36 of the High Court Regulation and cases for confirmation of sentences under section 38 of the said regulation, shall be referred to the Law Members for opinion, who shall after hearing the parties, submit the cases through the senior 3. Member for the orders of His Highness.
4. Nothing herein contained shell, in any way derogatefrom the powers of His Highness to refer any matters enumerated in the list of Reserved subjects to Council whenever he may consider it expedient to do so.
2. Political matters affecting the peace and Good Government of the State.
3. Treaties and agreements now in force or which mayhereafter be entered into by His Highness with the British Government or his Feudatorychiefs.
4. The relation between His Highness and the British Government or his Fendatory Chiefs.
5. Prerogatives and powers of His Highness, and the rights, privileges, gifts and allowances of the ruling family,its relations and connections.
6. Titles, Salutes, Ceremonials, Tours and Special occasions.
7. Frontier affairs.
8. Residency and Residency Correspondance.
9. Khillats, Tambols, Vartans and Grants at His Highness disposal.
10. Reception and Entertainment of Guests, Allocation of Huts, Rest-Houses and Guest-Houses.
12. Rakhs and Game Preservation.
13. State Representatives.
14. Baggikhana, Malmaveshi, Stables, Boats and Cars.
15. Jagirs and Muafis.
16. Devasthans and Dharmarth Trust Fund.
17. Appeals which lie to His Highness under Section 34, 35, 36 of the High Court Regulation, of Sambat 1978 and cases submitted to His Highness for confirmation of sentences under section 38 of the said Regulation.
19. Police special Reports as Accidents, Riots, Arrival and suspicious movements or actions of Visitors.
Note: Petitions submitted to His Highness direct shall be referred through the Senior Member to the Memberin-Charge of the Department concerned for disposal or report as the case may require.
DISTRIBUTION OF PORTFOLIOS
1. Commander-in-Chief and Senior and Foreign Member.
b. Senior Member
1. General Supervision.
2. Political matters affecting the peace and good Government of the State.
3. Receipt and despatch of all correspondence between His Highness and all officials.
4. General Administration Report.
(c) Foreign Member.
1. Treaties and agreements now in force or which may hereafter be entered into by His Highness with the British Government or his feudatory chief.
2. The relation between His Highness and the British Government or His feudatory chiefs.
3. Prerogatives and powers of His Highness and the rights, privileges, gifts and allowances of the Ruling Family; its relations and connections.
4. Titles, Salutes, Ceremonials, Tours and Special Occasions.
5. Frontier affairs.
6. Residency and Residency correspondence.
7. Khillats, Tambols, Vartans and Grants at His Highness.
8. Reception Department, Entertainment of Guests, Allocation of Huts, Rest Houses and Guest Houses.
10. Rakhsand Game Preservation.
11. State Representatives.
12. Baggikhana, Malmaveshi, Stables, Boats and Motor cars.
(d) Revenue Member.
1. Land Revenue.
2. Jagirs and Muafis.
3. Revenue Settlement.
4. Co-operative credit Societies.
7. Civil veterinary.
8. Devasthans and Dharmarth Trust Fund.
9. Red Cross.
10. State property in British India.
(e) Home and Law Member.
1. Education.Medical and Jails.
3. Research and Libraries.
4. Archeology and Museums.
6. Meteorological Department.
1. Judicial department and Legislation.
2. Appeals which lie to His Htghness under Section 34, 35 and 36 of the High Court Regulation of Sambat 1.978, and cases submitted to His Highness for confirmation of sentences under Section 38 of the said Regulation.
(f) Public Works Member.
2. Roads and Buildings.
3. Electrical Department.
4. Mechanical Department.
5. Telegraph Department.
6. Telephone Department.
(g) Finance and Police Member.
6. Kashmir valley food control.
8. Police Special Reports, such as Accident, Riots, Arrival and Suspicious movements or actions of visitors.
(h) Member for Commerce and Industries.
2. Sericulture and Silk Weaving.
3. Mulberry culture.
5. Commerce and Industries.
9. Industrial Education.
10. Printing Press.
POWERS OF THE COUNCIL
1. Subject to the sanction of His Highness, the Council shall be the final authority in all matters which cannot be dealt with finally by any member or any other officer, by virtue of powers delegated to him under any law, rule, regulation? order, resolution or practice sanctioned before the constitution of the Council, or sanctioned in future by the Council with the exception of cases relating to the subjects reserved for the commands of His Highness under the title or Reserved Subjects.
2. The Council shall, amongst other things, be empowered:
a. to see that the Annual Budget is framed and submitted to Council six weeks before the commencement of the next Financial year;
b. to pass the Annual Budget;
c. to sanction the reappropriation of any expenditure from one Head to another of the General Budgets over and above the powers delegated to Members;
d. to sanction all extra grants not provided for in the Budget;
e. to sanction all appointments and removals of Gazetted Officers;
f. to sanction leave to officers, over and above the powers delegated to Members;
g. to hold or cause to be held departmental enquiries. into the conduct of any officer and to call for records from any office through the Member-in-Charge and to pass such order as may be considered necessary;
h. to sanction pensions or allowances to Gazetted officers, over and above the powers delegated to Members, also special pensions and compassionateor other allowances for life or for lesser periods to employees of the State, their heirs or representatives;
i. to pass progress and other Reports submitted by Members.
j. to sanction acquisition of land under the Land Acquisition Act, over and above the powers delegated to the Revenue Member and to grant land under the State Waste Land Rules or under the House-building Rules;
k. to settle boundary disputes and questions relating to the Settlement Department, over and above the power delegated to the Member concerned;
l. to decide Appeals against orders passed by Member of Council in cases which are not specifically included in the Reserved Subjects;
m. to sanction suspensions or remissions of Revenue over and above the power delegated to the Member concerned;
n. to issue instructions for the more efficient organisation and dispatch of business in the various departments of the State and to make rules to regulate the Proceedings of any department;
o. to settle all matters pertaining to more than one department;
p. to revise any order passed by the Member-in-Charge of a department;
q. to call for and modify any proceedings in any department of the Administration and to stay the execution of any order pending the final decision of Council;
8. to sanction scheme of general reform, no such scheme being introduced without the previous sanction of Council.
RULES FOR CONDUCT OF BUSINESS IN THE COUNCIL
The Rules for the conduct of business in the Council shall be as follows:
1. Every case to be submitted to Council shall be sent to the Council Secretary by the Member concerned. She Member concerned shall see that a complete precis of the case is drawn up. and that his own opinion and opinions of the Head of the Department or Heads of the Departments subordinate to him and affected by the question at issue are duly recorded.
2. In every case in which financial issues are involved, the opinion of the Finance Member shall be obtained by the Member concerned and submitted with the case to Council.
3. When it is proposed to sanction, amend or repeal any regulation, rule, Law, order or notification the opinion of the Law Member shall be obtained by the Member concerned and submitted with the case to the Council.
4. In every case which directly affects more than one Member of Council, the Member submitting the case shall see that the opinion of the other Member or Members directly concerned and the opinion of the Heads of Departments affected are duly obtained and recorded before the case is referred to Council.
5. The Council Secretary shall prepare, in the order of the receipt, a list of all cases received from Members in the prescribed and complete form, he shall then draw up with approval of the Senior Member the Agenda for the Council Meeting; as a general rule, no case shall be entered in the Agenda unless it has been received at least four clear days before the next meeting is due to take place.
6. When the Agenda has been drawn up, copies shall be forwarded to every Member at least 48 hours before the time fixed for the Meeting of Council except in emergent cases.
7. Except, as provided for in Rule 19, the Council shall assemble at such time and place so appointed for the meeting.
8. The Council shall, as far as may be practicable meet on two consecutive days in every fortnight, but any matter of special urgency requiring immediate disposal may be dealt with at an extraordinary meeting which may be called at any time by the Senior Member.
9. Four Members shall constitute a quorum.
10. If a Member is unable to attend any meeting, he shall notify the fact to the Secretary.
11. Except as provided for in Rule 19, the Senior Member shall preside at meetings of the Council.
12. The Presiding Member shall, be responsible for the proper working of the Council and for compliance with, these rules and with any other rule or orders which may be passed by the Council from time to time.
13. The business of the Council shall be transacted in English.
14. At meetings of Council the cases shall be dealt within the order in which they are entered in the agenda unless the Presiding Member otherwise directs. If any Member desires postponement of the consideration of any case, it shall be postponed, unless the Presiding Member, for reasons
15. T to be recorded, rules otherwise. All cases so postponed shall be taken up at a subsequent meeting of Council.
16. Any cases not disposed of at a meeting of Council shall be taken up at the next meeting if practicable.
Should the Council decide to refer any question to a Select Committee, the Chairman and the other member of the Committee shall be appointed by the Council. The Council may authorize any
17. such Committee to record evidence or to summon representatives of any class or community.
18. In all cases discussed in Council, if there be no difference of opinion, the decision of the Council shall be recorded in the form of a Resolution. If opinion be divided, the question shall be put to vote and the opinion of the majority shall be recorded in the form of a Resolution, the presiding Member being entitled to casting vote in the event of the votes being equally divided, but in all cases where the decision is not unanimous, the opinion of every Member shall be separately recorded.
19. The proceedings of each Council meeting shall be subs misted by the Councial Secretary to His Highness for his sanction and no Resolution shall and come to force until and unless it has been sanctioned by His Highness. Should His Highness disapprove of any Council Resolution, he will inform the Senior Member to that effect and the Members of Council shall attend at such time and place as His Highness may appoint for discussion, in his presence, of the subject involved. His Highness will preside and after the Members have been given the opportunity of explaining their views, His Highness shall there upon decide and announce his decision in Council as to whether the Resolution shall be confirmed or vetoed.
20. All orders of the Council shall be issued in the name of His Highness in Council and shall be signed by the Secretary.
21. The Proceedings of Council shall be reduced to writing and recorded by the Secretary in a Minute Book, which shall be signed by the Presiding Member. In the absence of the Senior Member, the duties assigned to him under these rules shall be discharged by the Member next to him in order of Seniority, who may be present on the occasion.
DUTIES OF THE SECRETARY OF THE COUNCIL
1. to receive all papers submitted to Council;
2. to prepare and circulate the Agenda of Business with the approval of the senior Member and to give due notice of meetings to members;
3. to return cases to Members which have not been submitted in a complete form as laid down in Rules 1 to 4;
4. to record the proceedings of Council;
5. to obtain His Highness sanction to the Resolutions of Council; to issue the Members concerned the Resolutions of Council without loss of time;
6. to furnish each Member with a copy of the printed proceedings;
7. to comply with requisitions made by the Members of Council;
8. to see that reports called for by the Council are promptly sent for, from the Department concerned.
9. to supervise the working of the office and be responsible for the custody and maintenance of records;
10. the Secretary, subject to appeal to Council shall have complete control over his once establishment including the Superintendent, in the matters of appointment, suspension, leave Punishment and promotion;
11. he shall be responsible for the custody of the Seal of the Council and for the maintenance of the usual office registers, a list of pending references and the Minute Book of the Proceedings of the Council;
12. In all cases in which the Secretary sees no objection, copies of Resolution of the present and the late State Council and His Highness orders if applied for, may be given by him to applicants with reference to Council;
13. The Council Secretary shall be empowered to authorize fluctuating expenditure and to pass travelling allowance bills of his subordinate establishment within the allotments provided.