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unparalleled, except by an act of his own on another occasion, fraudulently and inhumanly endeavour to make the wife and son of the said ad

PART V. ministrator, contrary to the sentiments and the law of nature, the instruments of his oppressions;

Third Revolution in Benares. directing, “ that if they (the mother and son afore“ said) could be induced to yield the appearance That the said Warren Hastings having, in the

of a cheerful acquiescence in the new arrange- manner before recited, divested Durbege Sing of “ ment, and to adopt it as a measure formed with the administration of the province of Benares, did, their participation, it would be better than that of his own arbitrary will and pleasure, and against “ it should be done by a declared act of compul- the remonstrances of the rajah and his mother, “sion; but that at all events it ought to be done." (in whose name, and in whose right the said Dur

That, in consequence of the pressing declara-bege Sing, father of the one and husband of the tions aforesaid, the said Warren Hastings did on other, had administered the affairs of the governspecial recommendation appoint, in opposition to ment,) appoint a person called Jagher Deo Sheo, the wishes and desires of the rajah and his mother, to administer the same. another person to the administration of his affairs, That the new administrator, warned by the called Jagher Deo Seo.

severe example made of his predecessor, is repreThat the company having sent express orders sented by the said Warreu Hastings as having for the sending the resident by them before ap- made it his “avowed principle (as it might be pointed to Benares, the said Warren Hastings did expected it should be) that the sum fixed for the strongly oppose himself to the same; and did revenue must be collected.” And he did, upon throw upon the person appointed by the company the principle aforesaid, and by the means suggested (Francis Fowke, Esquire) several strong, but un- by a principle of that sort, accordingly levy from specified, reflections and aspersions, contrary to the country, and did regularly discharge to the the duty he owed to the company, and to the jus- British resident at Benares, by monthly payments, tice he owed to all its servants.

the sums imposed by the said Warren Hastings, as That the said resident being appointed by the it is asserted by the resident Fowke; but the said votes of the rest of the council, in obedience to the Warren Hastings did assert, that his annual collecreiterated orders of the company, and in despite tions did not amount to more than lack 37,37,600, of the opposition of the said Hastings, did proceed or thereabouts, which he says is much short of the to Benares; and, on the representation of the revenues of the province, and is about twenty-four parties, and the submission of the accounts of the thousand pounds short of his agreement. aforesaid Durbitzee Sing to an arbitrator, did find That it further appears, that notwithstanding the him, the said Durbitzee Sing, in debt to the com- new administrator aforesaid was appointed two pany for a sum not considerable enough to justify months, or thereabouts, after the beginning of the the severe treatment of the said Durbitzee Sing; Fuseli year, that is to say, about the middle of the his wife and son complaining, at or about the same

No per 1782, and the former administrator had time, that the balances due to him from the au- collected a certain portion of the revenues of that mils, or sub-collectors, had been received by the year, amounting to £.17,000 and upwards; yet new administrator, and carried to his own credit, he, the said new administrator, upon the unjust in prejudice and wrong to the said Durbitzee Sing; and destructive principle aforesaid, suggested by which representation,

the only one that has been the cruel and violent proceedings of the said transmitted on the part of the said sufferers, has Warren Hastings towards his predecessor, did not been contradicted.

levy on the province, within the said year, the That it appears, that the said Durbitzee Sing whole amount of the revenues to be collected, in did afterwards go to Calcutta for the redress of addition to the sum collected by his predecessor his grievances; and that it does not appear, that aforesaid. the same were redressed, or even his complaints That, on account of a great drought, which heard, but he received two peremptory orders from prevailed in the province aforesaid, a remission of the supreme council to leave the said city, and to certain duties in grain was proposed by the chief return to Benares; that on his return to Benares, criminal judge at Benares; but the administrator and being there met by Warren Hastings afore- aforesaid, being fearful, that the revenue would fall said, he, the said Warren Hastings, although he short in his hands, did strenuously oppose

himself had reason to be well assured, that the said Dur- to the necessary relief to the inhabitants of the bitzee Sing was in possession of small or no sub- said city. stance, did again cruelly and inhumanly, and That notwithstanding the cantonment of several without any legal authority, order the said Dur bodies of the company's troops within the province, bitzee Sing to be strictly imprisoned; and the said since the abolition of the native government, it Durbitzee Sing, in consequence of the vexations, became subject in a particular manner to the hardships, and oppressions aforesaid, died in a rajahs upon the borders ; insomuch that in one short time after insolvent; but whether in prison quarter no fewer than thirty villages had been or not, does not appear.

sacked and burned, and the inhabitants reduced to the most extreme distress.


That the resident, in his letter to the board at a large proportion of it by a false measurement, Calcutta, did represent, that the collection of the or other pretexts; and from those, whose enrevenue was become very difficult; and, besides gagements are for a fixed rent in money, the the extreme drought, did assign for a cause of that half, or a greater proportion, is taken in kind. difficulty the following:

“ This is in effect a tax upon the industry of the “ That there is also one fund, which in former“ inhabitants ; since there is scarce a field of grain years was applied in this country to remedy “ in the province, I might say not one, which has

temporary inconveniences in the revenue, and “ not been preserved by the incessant labour of “ which in the present year does not exist. This “ the cultivator, by digging wells for their supply, “ was the private fortunes of merchants and or watering them from the wells of masonry, " shroffs (bankers) resident in Benares, from whom “ with which their country abounds, or from the “ aumils (collectors) of credit could obtain tem “ neighbouring tanks, rivers, and nullahs. The

porary loans to satisfy the immediate calls of “people, who imposed on themselves this volun“ the rajah. These sums, which used to circulate tary and extraordinary labour, and not unat“ between the aumil and the merchant, have been “tended with expence, did it on the expectation “ turned into a different channel, by bills of “ of reaping the profits of it; and it is certain they “ exchange to defray the expences of government “ would not have done it, if they had known, that “ both on the west coast of India, and also at “ their rulers, from whom they were entitled to “ Madras." To which representation it does not an indemnification, would take from them what appear that any answer was given, or that any they so hardly earned. If the same administramode of redress was adopted in consequence “ tion continues, and the country shall again thereof.

“ labour under want of rain, every field will be That the said Warren Hastings, having passed abandoned, the revenue fail, and thousands through the province of Benares (Gauzipore) in his “ perish through want of subsistence ; for who progress towards Oude, did, in a letter dated from “ will labour for the sole benefit of others, and to the city of Lucknow, the 2d of April 1784, give to “ make himself the subject of exaction? These the council board at Calcutta an account (highly practices are to be imputed to the naib himself dishonourable to the British government) of the “ (the administrator forced by the said Warren effect of the arrangements made by himself in “ Hastings on the present rajah of Benares). The the years 1781 and 1782, in the words following: “ avowed principle on which he acts, and which “ Having contrived, by making forced stages, “ he acknowledged to myself, is, that the whole “while the troops of my escort marched at the fixed for the revenue of the province must " ordinary rate, to make a stay of five days at “ be collected; and that, for this purpose, the “ Benares, I was thereby furnished with the means “deficiency arising in places where the crops have “ of acquiring some knowledge of the state of the “ failed, or which have been left uncultivated, “province, which I am anxious to communicate “must be supplied from the resources of others, Indeed the enquiry, which was in

"where the soil has been better suited to the a great degree obtruded upon me, affected season, or the industry of the cultivators hath “me with very mortifying reflections on my “ been more successfully exerted : a principle, "inability to apply it to any useful purpose. " which, however specious and plausible it may at “ From the confines of Buxar to Benares I was “ first appear, certainly tends to the most perni“ followed and fatigued by the clamours of the “ cious and destructive consequences.

If this de“ discontented inhabitants. It was what I ex “claration of the naib had been made only to “pected in a degree, because it is rare, that the “ myself, I might have doubted my construction “ exercise of authority should prove satisfactory “ of it; but it was repeated by him to Mr. Ander“ to all who are the objects of it. The distresses son, who understood it exactly in the same sense. “ which were produced by the long continued “ In the management of the customs, the con“ drought, unavoidably tended to heighten the “ duct of the naib, or of the officer under him, general discontent; yet I have reason to fear, was forced also upon my attention.

The exorthat the cause existed principally in a defective, bitant rates exacted by an arbitrary valuation if not a corrupt and oppressive, administration.of the goods ; the practice of exacting duties “Of a multitude of petitions, which were pre twice on the same goods, first from the seller, " sented to me, and of which I took minutes, “ and afterwards from the buyer ; and the vexa

every one, that did not relate to a personal “ tions, disputes, and delays, drawn on the mer“ grievance, contained the representation of one “chants by these oppressions, were loudly com" and the same species of oppression, which is in plained of; and some instances of this kind “ its nature of an influence most fatal to the future were said to exist at the very time I was at “ cultivation. The practice, to which I allude, is

“ Benares. Under such circumstances we “ this : it is affirmed, that the aumils and renters “ not to wonder if the merchants of foreign “exact from the proprietors of the actual harvest “ countries are discouraged from resorting to " a large encrease in kind on their stipulated rent; “ Benares, and if the commerce of that province " that is, from those who hold their potta by the should annually decay. Other evils, or imputed “ tenure of paying one half of the produce of their " evils, have accidentally come to my knowledge, 46

crops, either the whole, without subterfuge, or “ which I will not now particularize; as I lope,

“ to you.



“ that, with the assistance of the resident, they " and many others, solely to him;" although on

may be in part corrected. One evil I must his own representation it does appear, that he was

mention, because it has been verified by my own the sole cause of the irregularities therein describ“ observation, and is of that kind, which reflects ed : neither does it appear, that the administrator, “ an unmerited reproach on our general and na- so by the said Hastings nominated and removed, “ tional character. When I was at Buxar, the was properly charged and called to answer for the “ resident, at my desire, enjoined the naib to said recited irregularities, or for the many others “ appoint creditable people to every town, through not recited, but attributed solely to him; nor has “ which our route lay, to persuade and encourage any plea or excuse from him been transmitted to “ the inhabitants to remain in their houses, pro- the board, or to the court of directors; but he was,

mising to give them guards as I approached, and at the instance of the said Hastings, deprived of “ they required it for their protection ; and that his said office, contrary to the principles of natural “ he might perceive how earnest I was for his justice, in a violent and arbitrary manner; which “observation of this precaution, I repeated it to proceeding, combined with the example made of “ him in person, and dismissed him, that he might his predecessor, must necessarily leave to the per

precede me for that purpose. But, to my great son, who should succeed to the said office, no

disappointment, I found every place, through distinct principle, upon which he might act with which I passed, abandoned ; nor had there been safety. But in comparing the consequences of the “ a man left in any of them for their protection. two delinquencies charged, the failure of the pay“ I am sorry to add, that, from Buxar to the op- ment of the revenues (from whatever cause it may

posite boundary, I have seen nothing but traces arise) is more likely to be avoided than any severe

of complete devastation in every village ; whe- course towards the inhabitants; as the former fault ther caused by the followers of the troops, was, besides the deprivation of office, attended which have lately pussed, for their natural with two imprisonments, with a menace of death,

relief, and I know not whether my own may and an actual death, in disgrace, poverty, and not have had their share, or from the apprehen- insolvency; whereas the latter, namely, the op“sions of the inhabitants left to themselves, and pression, and thereby the total ruin, of the country, “ of themselves deserting their houses. I wish to charged on the second administrator, was only

acquit my own countrymen of the blame of followed by loss of office; although he, the said “ these unfavourable appearances,

and in my own Warren Hastings, did further assert (but with what “ heart I do acquit them; for at one encampment truth does not appear) that the collection of the

a crowd of people came to me, complaining, last administrator had fallen much short of the “ that their new aumil, (collector,) on the ap- revenue of the province. proach of any military detachment, himself That the said Warren Hastings himself was first fled from the place ; and the inhabitants, sensible, that the frequent changes by him made having no one to whom they could apply for would much disorder the management of the redress, or for the representation of their griev- revenues, and seemed desirous of concealing his

ances, and being thus remediless, fled also ; so intentions concerning the last change until the that their houses and effects became a prey to time of its execution. Yet it appears by a letter

any person, who chose to plunder them. The from the British resident, dated the 23d of June general conclusion appeared to me an inevitable 1784, “ that a very strong report prevailed at consequence from such a state of facts; and “ Benares of his (the said Hastings's) intentions of

my own senses bore testimony to it in this spe- appointing a new naib for the approaching year; “ ciñck instance: nor do I know how it is possi- “ and that the effect is evident, which the preva“ ble for any officer commanding a military party,

“ lence of such an idea amongst the aumils would “how attentive soever he may be to the discipline“ probably have on the cultivation at this parti“ and forbearance of his people, to prevent dis- “ cular time. The heavy mofussil kists (harvest “ orders when there is neither opposition to hinder instalments) have now been collected by the nor evidence to detect them. These and many

aumils; the season

of tillage is arrived; the “ other irregularities I impute solely to the naib, ryots (country farmers) must be indulged, and “ and recommend his instant removal.

even assisted by advances; and the aumil must “I cannot help remarking, that, except the

“ look for his returns in the abundance of the “ city of Benares, the province is in effect without crop, the consequence of this early attention to a government. The administration of the pro

the cultivation. The effect is evident, which vince is misconducted, and the people oppressed, the report of a change in the first officer of the trade discouraged, and the revenue in danger revenue must have on the minds of the aumils, of a rapid decline from the violent appropriation by leaving them at an uncertainty of what they of its means.

have in future to expect; and, in proportion to That the said Warren Hastings did recommend “the degree of this uncertainty, their efforts and to the council, for a remedy of the disorders and expences in promoting the cultivation will be calamities which had arisen from his own acts, languid and sparing. dispositions, and appointments, that the adminis- “ In compliance with the naib's request I have trator aforesaid should be instantly removed from “ written to all the aumils, encouraging and his office; attributing the aforesaid“ irregularities,“ ordering them to attend to the cultivation of

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“their respective districts. But I conceive | Macpherson, declaring the said Warren Hastings “should be able to promote this very desirable responsible for the temporary expediency of the “ intention much more effectually, if you will same. “ honour me with the communication of your That the said Warren Hastings, in the plan “ intentions on this subject. At the same time I aforesaid, having strongly objected to the appoint“ cannot help just remarking, that, if a change is ment of any European collectors, that is to say, of “ intended, the sooner it takes place, the more any European servants of the company being con" the bad effects I have described will be ob- cerned in the same, declared, that there had been “ viated.”

sufficient experience of the ill effects of their being That the council, having received the proposi- so employed in the province of Bengal; by which tion for the removal of the administrator afore the said Hastings did either in loose and general said, did also in a letter to him (the said Hastings) terms convey a false imputation upon the conduct condemn the frequent changes by him made in the of the company's servants employed in the coladministration of the collection of Benares; but lection of the revenues of Bengal, or he was guilty did consent to such alterations as might be made of a criminal neglect of duty, in not bringing without encroaching on the rights established by to punishment the particular persons, whose evil his (the said Hastings's) agreement in the year practices had given rise to such a general imputa1781, and did desire him to transmit to them his tion on British subjects and servants of the complan for a new administration.

pany, as to render them unfit for service in other That the said Hastings did transmit a plan, places. which, notwithstanding the evils, which had hap That the said Warren Hastings having, in the pened from the former frequent changes, he did course of three years, made three complete revopropose as a temporary expedient for the adminis-lutions in the state of Benares, by expelling, in tration of the revenues of the said province; in the first instance, the lawful and rightful goverwhich no provision was made for the reduction or nour of the same, under whose care and superinremission of revenue, as exigencies might require; tendence a large and certain revenue, suitable to or for the extraction of the circulating species from the abilities of the country, and consistent with its the said province; or for the supply of the neces- prosperity, was paid with the greatest punctuality; sary advances for cultivation ; nor for the removal and by afterwards displacing two effective goveror prevention of any of the grievances by him nours or administrators of the province, appointed before complained of, other than an inspection by in succession by himself; and, in consequence of the resident and the chief criminal magistrate of the said appointments, and violent and arbitrary Benares, and other regulations equally void of removals, the said province “ being left in effect effect and authority; and which plan Mr. Stables, “ without a government,"except in one city only; one of the supreme council, did altogether reject; and having, after all, settled no more than a tembut the same was approved of, as a temporary porary arrangement; is guilty of an high crime expedient, with some exceptions, by two other and misdemeanour in the destruction of the counmembers of the board, Mr. Wheler and Mr. try aforesaid.


much under the controul of the governour-general I.

and council of Bengal, that, in the opinion of all

the native powers, the English name and characThat the reigning nabob of Oude, commonly ter is concerned in every act of his government. called Asoph ul Dowla, (son and successor to Shuja ul Dowla,) by taking into or continuing in his pay

II. certain bodies of regular British troops, and by having afterwards admitted the British resident at That Warren Hastings, Esquire, contrary to his court into the management of all his affairs, law, and to his duty, and in disobedience to the foreign and domestick, and particularly into the orders of the East-India company, arrogating to administration of his finances, did gradually be- himself the nomination of the resident at the court come, in substance and effect, as well as in general of Oude, as his particular agent and representative, repute and estimation, a dependant on, or vassal and rejecting the resident appointed by the comof, the East India company; and was, and is, so pany, and obtruding upon them a person of his



own choice, did from that time render himself in a particular manner responsible for the good

VII. government of the provinces composing the dominions of the nabob of Oude.

That on the demand of the nabob of Oude on

his parents for the last of the sums, which comIII.

pleted the six hundred and thirty thousand pounds

aforesaid, they the said parents did positively refuse That the provinces aforesaid, having been, at to pay any part of the same to their son for the the time of their first connexion with the company, use of the company, until he should agree to cerin an improved and flourishing condition, and tain terms to be stipulated in a regular treaty; yielding a revenue of more than three millions of and, among other particulars, to secure them in pounds sterling, or thereabouts, did soon after the remainder of their possessions, and also on no that period begin sensibly to decline; and the account or pretence to make any further demands subsidy of the British troops stationed in that pro- or claims on them; and, well knowing from vince, as well as other sums of money due to the whence all his claims and exactions had arisen, company by treaty, ran considerably in arrear; they demanded, that the said treaty, or family comalthough the prince of the country, during the time pact, should be guarantied by the governourthese arrears accrued, was otherwise in distress, general and council of Bengal; and a treaty was and had been obliged to reduce all his establish- accordingly agreed to, executed by the nabob, ments.

and guarantied by John Bristow, Esquire, the reIV.

sident at Oude, under the authority, and with the

express consent, of the said Warren Hastings and That the prince aforesaid, or nabob of Oude, the council general, and, in consequence thereof, did, in humble and submissive terms, supplicate the sum last required was paid, and discharges the said Warren Hastings to be relieved from a given to the nabob for all the money, which he body of troops, whose licentious behaviour he com- had borrowed from his own mother and the mother plained of, and who were stationed in his country of his father. without

any obligation by treaty to maintain them; That the distresses and disorders in the nabob's pleading the failure of harvest, and the prevalence government, and his debt to the company, conof famine in his country;-a compliance with which tinuing to encrease, notwithstanding the violent request by the said Warren Hastings was refused methods before mentioned taken to augment his in unbecoming, offensive, and insulting language. resources, the said Warren Hastings, on the 21st

of May, and on the 31st July 1781 (he and Mr. Wheler being the only remaining members of the

council general, and he having the conclusive and That the said nabob, labouring under the aforecasting voice, and thereby being in effect the whole said and other burthens, and being continually council) did, in the name and under the authority urged for payment, was advised to extort, and did of the board, resolve on a journey to the upper extort, from his mother and grandmother, under provinces, in order to a personal interview with the pretext of loans, (and sometimes without that the nabob of Oude, towards the settlement of his appearance,) various great sums of money, amount- distressed affairs; and did give to himself a deleing in the whole to £.630,000 sterling, or there- gation of the powers of the said council, in direct abouts; alleging in excuse the rigorous demands violation of the company's orders, forbidding such of the East India company, for whose use the said delegation. extorted money had been demanded, and to which

VIII. a considerable part of it had been applied.

That the said Warren Hastings, having by his VI.

appointment met the nabob of Oude near a place

called Chunar, and possessing an entire and absoThat the two female parents of the nabob | lute command over the said prince, did, contrary aforesaid were among the women of the greatest to justice and equity, and the security of property, rank, family, and distinction in Asia; and were as well as to publick faith, and the sanction of the left by the deceased nabob, the son of the one, company's guarantee, under the colour of a treaty, and the husband of the other, in charge of a certain which treaty was conducted secretly without a considerable part of his treasures in money, and written document of any part of the proceeding, other valuable moveables, as well as certain land- (except the pretended treaty itself,) authorize the ed estates, called jaghires, in order to the support said nabob to seize upon and confiscate to his of their own dignity, and the honourable mainte- own profit, the landed estates, called jaghires, of nance of his women, and a numerous offspring, and his parents, kindred, and principal nobility; only their dependants; the said family amounting in stipulating a pension to the net amount of the rent the whole to two thousand persons, who were by of the said lands as an equivalent, and that equithe said nabob, at his death, recommended in valent to such only whose lands had been guaa particular manner to the care and protection of rantied to them by the company: but provided the said Warren Hastings.

neither in the said pretended treaty, nor in any


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