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appear, that he, Warren Hastings, did discounte- weak and fragile, such intrigues might be alnance the double dealing and fraudulent agencies lowed. of his and the company's minister at that court;
XIII. or did disavow any particular in the letter from him the said Browne, of the 30th of December That the said Hastings, further to persuade the 1783, stating the offers made on his part to the court of directors to involve themselves in the Mogul, so contradictory to his late declarations to affairs of the Mogul, and to reconcile this measure the heir-apparent of that monarch, or did give any with his former conduct and declared opinions, did reprimand to the said Browne, or did shew any write to them to the following effect; that " at that mark of displeasure against him, as having acted “ former period, to which the ancient policy with without orders, but did again send him, with re- regard to the Mogul applied, the king's authority newed consequence, to the court aforesaid.
was sufficiently respected (which he knew not to
“ be true, having himself declared, in his minute XI.
“ of the 25th of October 1774, that he remained
“ at Delhi, the ancient capital of the empire, a That the said Warren Hastings, still pursuing“ mere cipher in the administration of it') to mainhis said evil designs, did apply to the council for “ tain itself against common vicissitudes. That he discretionary powers relative to the intrigues and “ would not have advised interference if the king factions in the Moguls court, giving assurances of “ himself retained the exercise of it, however his resolution not to proceed against their sense ; feeble, in his own hands. That if it [the Mogul's but the said council, being fully aware of his dis- authority) is suffered to receive its final extincposition, and having Major Browne's letter, re- “ tion, it is impossible to foresee what power may corded by himself, the said Warren Hastings, “ arise out of its ruins, or what events may be before them, did refuse to grant the said discre- “ linked in the same chain of revolution with it : tionary powers; but, on the contrary, did exhort“ but your interests may suffer by it--your repuhim “ most sedulously and cautiously to avoid, in “ tation certainly will, as his right to our assist“his correspondence with the different princes in “ance has been constantly acknowledged, and by “ India, whatever may commit, or be strained into a train of consequences, to which our govern"an interpretation of committing, the company, “ment has, not intentionally, given birth; but “ either as to their army or treasure;” observing, “ most especially by the movements, which its in" that the company's orders are positive against fluence, by too near an approach, has excited, it “ their interference in the objects of dispute be- “bas unfortunately become the efficient instru“ tween the country powers.
“ment of a great portion of the king's present
“ distresses and dangers ;" intimating (as well as XII.
the studied obscurity of his expressions will permit
any thing to be discerned) that his own late inThat in order to subvert the plain and natural trigues had been among the causes of the distresses interpretation given by the council to the orders of and dangers, which, by new intrigues, he did prethe court of directors, and to justify his dangerous tend to remove: and he did conclude this part of intrigucs, the said Warren Hastings, in his letter his letter with some loose general expressions of his of the 16th June 1784 to the said court, did, in a caution not to affect the company's interests or most insolent and contemptuous manner,
endea- revenues by any measures he might at that time vour to persuade them of their ignorance of the take. true sense of their own orders, and to limit their
XIV. prohibition of interference with the disputes of the country powers to such country powers as are That the principle, so far as the same hati been permanent ; expressing himself as follows : “ the directly avowed, of the said proceedings at the faction, which now surrounds the throne, [the Mogul's court, was as altogether irrational, and
Mogul's throne,) is widely different from the idea, the pretended object as impracticable, as the means “ which your commands are intended to convey taken in pursuit of it were fraudulent and disho
by the expressions, to which you have generally nourable, namely, the restoration of the Mogul in applied them, of country powers, to which some degree to the dignity of his situation, and to “ that of
permanency is a necessary adjunct ; his free-agency in the conduct of his affairs. For " and which may be more properly compared to the said Hastings, at the very time, in which he
a splendid bubble, which the slightest breath of did with the greatest apparent earnestness urge the
opposition may dissipate with every trace of purpose, which he pretended to have in view, with “ its existence." "By which construction the said regard to the dignity and liberty of the Mogul emHastings did endeavour to persuade the court of perour, did represent him as a person wholly disdirectors, that they meant to confine their pro- qualified, and even indisposed, to take any active hibition of sinister intrigues to those powers part whatsoever in the conduct of his own affairs ; only, who could not be easily hurt by them, and that any attempt for that purpose would be and whose strength was such, that their re- utterly impracticable: and this he hath stated to sentment of such clandestine interference was the court of directors as a matter of publick noto be dreaded; but that, where the powers were toriety, in his said letter of the 16th of June
1784, in the following emphatical and decisive persons, all of whom he describes as incapable, terms:
and the principal as indisposed to avail himself “ You need not be told the character of the king, thereof, must have had some other motives for this “ whose inertness, and the habit of long-suffering, long, intricate, dark, and laborious proceeding “ has debased his dignity and the fortunes of his with the Mogul, which must be sought in his ac“ house beyond the power of retrieving either the tions, and the evident drift and tendency thereof, “ one or the other. Whilst his personal repose and in declarations, which were brought out by “ is undisturbed, he will prefer to live in the him to serve other purposes, but which serve fully “ meanest state of indigence, under the rule of men, to explain his real intentions in this intrigue. “whose views are bounded by avarice, and the power, which they derive from his authority,
XVII. “ rather than commit any share of it to his own “sons, though his affection for them is boundless That the other members of the council general “ in every other respect; from a natural jealousy, having abundantly certified their averseness to “ founded on the experience of a very different his intrigues, and even having shewn apprehen“ combination of those circumstances, which once sions of his going personally to the Mogul and the “ served as a temptation and example of unlaw- Mahrattas for the purpose of carrying on the same, “ful ambition in the princes of the royal line. the said Hastings was driven headlong to acts, “ His ministers, from a policy more reaso
asonable, which did much more openly indicate the true “ have constantly employed every means of in- nature and purpose of his machinations; for he at “ Aluence to confirm this disposition, and to pre- length recurred directly, and with little disguise, “ vent his sons from having any share in the dis- to the Mahrattas, and did open an intrigue with “ tribution of affairs, so as to have established a them, although he was obliged to confess, in his “complete usurpation of the royal prerogative letter aforesaid of the 16th June 1784, that the “ under its own sanction and patronage.” exception, which he contended to be implied in
the orders of the court of directors, forbidding the XV.
intermeddling in the disputes of “ the country
powers,” namely,“ powers not permanent,” did That the said Warren Hastings, having given by no means apply to the Mahrattas; and he this opinion of the sovereign, for whose freedom informs the court of directors, that he did,
the he pretended so anxious a concern, did describe the very first advice he received of the flight of the minister, with whom he had long acted in concur- Mogul's son, write to Mr. James Anderson, to rence, and from whom he had just received the apprize the Mahratta chief Scindia of that event; extraordinary secret embassy aforesaid for the pur- for which, as he was unprepared, he desired his pose of effecting the deliverance of his master, the [the said Scindia's) advice for his conduct on the Mogul, from the usurpations of his ministers, as “ occasion of it.” Which method of calling for follows ;-" The first minister, Mudjud ul Dowla, the advice of a foreign power to regulate his poli“ is totally deficient in every military quality; tical conduct, instead of being regulated therein “ conceited of his own superiour talents; and by the advice of the British council, and the “ formed to the practice of that crooked policy, standing orders of the court of directors, was a “ which generally defeats its own purpose, but sin-procedure highly criminal; and the crime is ag
cerely attached to his master." The reality of gravated by his not communicating the said corthe said attachment was not improbable, but alto respondence to the council general, as by his duty gether useless, as the said minister was the only he was bound to do; but it does abundantly prove one among the principal persons about the king, his concert with the Mahrattas in all, that related who (besides the total want of all military and civil to his negociations in the Mogul court, which were ability) possessed no territories, troops, or other carried on agreeably to their advice, and in submeans of serving and supporting him, but was serviency to their views and purposes. himself solely upheld by his influence over his master ; neither doth the said Hastings free him
XVIII. any more than the persons more efficient, who were to be destroyed, from a disposition to alienate the
That, in consequence of the cabal begun with king from an attention to his affairs, and from all the Mahrattas, the said chief Scindia did send his confidence in his own family; but, on the contrary, “ familiar and confidential ministers” to him the he brings him forward as the very first among said Hastings, being at Lucknow, with whom the the instances he adduces to exemplify the prac- said Hastings did hold several secret conferences, tices of the ministers against their sovereign and his without any secretary, or other assistant; and the children.
said Hastings hath not conveyed to the court of XVI.
directors any minutes thereof, but hath purposely
involved even the general effect and tendency of That the said Warren Hastings, recommending these conferences in such obscurity, that it is no in general terms, and yet condemning in detail, otherwise possible to perceive the drift and tenevery part of his own pretended plan, as imprac-dency of the same, but by the general scope of ticable in itself, and as undertaken in favour of counsels and acts relative to the politicks of the Mogul, and of the Mahrattas together, and by the which chiefs were the ministers aforesaid, being final event of the whole, which is sufficiently visi- cut off by their mutual dissensions, and the fort of ble. For
Delhi being at length delivered to the Mahrattas, XIX.
the said Scindia became the uncontrouled ruler of
the royal army; and the person of the Mogul, with That the said Hastings had declared, in his said the use of all his pretensions and claims, fell into letter of the 16th June 1784, that the Mogulis right the hands of a nation already too powerful, together to our assistance had been constantly acknow- with an extensive territory, which entirely covers ledged ; that the Mogul had been oppressed by the the company's possessions and dependencies on lesser Mahomedan princes in the character of his one side, and particularly those of the nabob of officers of state, and military commanders; and he Oude. did plainly intimate, that the said Mogul ought to
XX. be relieved from that servitude. And he did, in giving an account to the court of directors of the That the circumstances of these countries did, conferences aforesaid, assure them, that “ his in- in the opinion of the said Warren Hastings him“clinations (the inclinations of the Mahratta chief self, sufficiently indicate to him the necessity of “ aforesaid] were not very dissimilar from his own;" not aggrandizing any power whatsoever on their and that“ neither in this, nor in any other instance, borders, he having in the aforesaid letter of the " would he suffer himself to be drawn into mea- 16th June given a deliberate opinion of the situa“ sures, which shall tend to weaken their connexion, tion of Oude, in the words following: “ that,
nor in this even to oppose his [the said chief's] “ whilst we are at peace with the powers of “ inclinations;" the said Hastings well knowing, as Europe, it is only in this quarter, that your in his letter to Colonel Muir he has confessed, that possessions under the government of Bengal are the inclinations of the said Scindia were to seize « vulnerable." And he did further in the said on the Mogul's territories, and that he himself did letter state, that " if things had continued as they secretly concur therein, though he did not formally “ had been to that time with a divided governinsert his concurrence in the treaty with the said ment,” (viz. the company's and the vizier’s, Mahratta chief. It is plain, therefore, that he did which government he had himself established, and all along concur with the Mahrattas in their de- under which it ever must in a great degree remain, signs against the said king and his ministers, under whilst the said country continues in a state of dethe treacherous pretence of supporting the authority pendence,] “ the slightest shock from a foreign of the former against the latter, and did contrive “ hand, or even an accidental internal commotion, and effect the ruin of them all.- For, first, he did might have thrown the whole into confusion, give evil and fraudulentcounsel to the heir-apparent“ and produced the most fatal consequences." In of the Mogul “to make advances to the Mahrattas," this perilous situation he made the above-recited when he well knew, and had expressly concurred in, sacrifices to the ambition of the Mahrattas, and the designs of that state against his father's (the did all along so actively countenance and forward Moguls) dominions; and further to engage and their proceedings, and with so full a sense of their entrap the said prince, did assert, that “ effect, that in his minute of the 24th December “ vernment” (meaning the British government] 1784 he has declared, “ that in the countries,
was in intimate and sworn connexion with Ma- " which border on the dominions of the nabob “ hadajee Scindia,” when no alliance, offensive or vizier, or on that quarter of our own, in effect defensive, appears to exist between the said Scindia “ there is no other power.” And he did further and the East India company, nor can exist, other- admit, that the presence of the Mahratta chief wise than in virtue of some secret agreement be- aforesaid, so near the borders of the nabob's tween him the said Scindia and Warren Hastings, dominions, was no cause of suspicion ; for, “ that entered into by the latter without the knowledge of “ it is the effect of his own solicitation, and is so his collcagues, and the government, and never “ far the effect of an act of that government.” communicated to the court of directors. And secondly, he did, in order to further the designs of
XXI. the Mahrattas, contrive and effect the ruin of the said Mogul and his authority by setting on foot, That, in further pursuit of the same pernicious through the aforesaid Major Browne, sundry per- design, he the said Warren Hastings did enter plexed and intricate negociations, contrary to pub- into an agreement to withdraw a very great body of lick faith, and to the honour of the British nation, the British troops out of the nabob's dominions ; by which he did exceedingly encrease the confusion asserting, however truly, yet in direct contradiction and disorders of the Mogul's court, exposing the said to his own declarations, that “ this government Mogul to new indignities, insults, and distresses, (meaning the British government] has not any and almost all of the northern parts of India to rigbt to force defence with its maintenance great and ruinous convulsions, until three out of “ upon him ” [the nabob); and he did thus not four of the principal chieftains, some of them only avowedly aggrandize the Mahratta state, and possessing the territories lately belonging to Nud-weaken the defence upon the frontier, but did as jiff Cawn, and maintaining among them eighty avowedly detain their captain-general in force on thousand troops of horse and foot, and some of that very frontier, notwithstanding he was well
apprized, that they had designs against those endanger the safety of the British possessions, dependent territories of Oude, which they had with having established in force the said Mahrattas great difficulty been persuaded, even in appear on the frontier, as afore recited, and finding the ance, to include in the treaty of peace; and that council general averse in that situation to the they have never renounced their claims upon withdrawing the British forces therefrom, and for certain large and valuable portions of them, and disbanding them to the extent required by the have shewn evident signs of their intentions, on the said Hastings, did in a minute of the 4th Defirst opportunity, of asserting and enforcing them. cember 1784, after stating a supposition, that, And finally, the said Warren Hastings, in contra- contrary to his opinion, the said troops should diction to sundry declarations of his own concern not be reduced, propose to employ them under ing the necessity of curbing the power of the the command of the Mogul's son, then under Mahrattas, and to the principle of sundry measures
the influence of the Mahrattas, in a war against undertaken by himself professedly for that purpose, the aforesaid people or religious sect called Seiks, and to the sense of the house of commons defending the same on the following principles : expressed in their resolution of 28th May 1782“ I feel the sense of an obligation imposed on me, against any measures, that tended to unite the by the supposition I have made, to state a mode dangerous powers of the Mahratta empire under “ of rendering the detachment of use in its preone active comm mand, has endeavoured to persuade
“ scribed station, and of affording the appearance the company, that, " while Scindia lives, every
of a cause for its retention." accession of territory obtained by him will be an “ advantage to this the British] government;"
XXIV. which, if it was true as respecting the personal dispositions of Scindia, which there is no reason to That the said Hastings did admit, that there believe, yet it was highly criminal to establish a was no present danger to the company's possespower in the Mahrattas, which must survive the sions from that nation, which could justify him in man, in confidence of whose personal dispositions such a war, as he had declared, that the Mahrattas a power more than personal was given, and which were the only power, that bordered on the commay hereafter fall into hands disposed to make a pany's possessions and those of the vizier ; but he more hostile use of it.
did assign as a reason for going to war with them XXII.
their military and enthusiastick spirit; the hard
ness of their natural constitution ; the dangers, That in consequence of all the before-recited which might arise from them in some future time, intrigues, the Mogul emperour being in the hands if they should ever happen to be united under one of the Mahrattas, he the said Mogul has been head, they existing at present in a state little difobliged to declare the head of the Mahratta state ferent from anarchy; and he did predict great to be vicegerent of the Mogul empire, an authority, danger from them, and at no very remote period, which supersedes that of vizier, and has thereby |“ if this people be permitted to grow into matuconsolidated in the Mahratta state all the powers“ rity without interruption." And though he doth acknowledged to be of legal authority in India; in pretend, that the solicitations of the heir-apparent consequence of which they have acquired, and of the Mogul, who he says did repeatedly and have actually already attempted to use, the said earnestly solicit him to obtain the permission to claims of general superiority against the company use the company's troops for the purpose aforeitself; the Mahrattas claiming a right in them- said, had weight with him; yet he doth declare, selves to a fourth part of the revenues of all the as he expresses himself in the minute aforesaid, provinces in the company's possession, and claim that “ a stronger impulse, arising from the hope ing, in right of the Mogul, the tribute due to him; “ of blasting the growth of a generation, whose by which actings and doings the said Hastings has “ strength might become fatal to our own, strongly to the best of his power brought the British pro “ pleaded in my mind for supporting his wishes. vinces in India into a dependence on the Mahratta state; and in order to add to the aforesaid enor-
XXV. mous claims a proportioned force, he did never cease, during his stay in India, to contrive the That the said Warren Hastings, after forcibly means for its encrease ; for it is of publick recommending the plan aforesaid, did state strong notoriety, that one great object of the Mahratta objections, that did, “ in his judgment, outweigh policy is to unite under their dominion the nation“ the advantages, which might arise from a comor religious sect of the Seiks, who being a people pliance with it.” Yet the said Hastings, being abounding with soldiers, and possessing large determined to pursue his scheme for aggrandizing, territories, would extend the Mahratta power over at any rate, the Mahratta power, in whose adult the whole of the vast countries to the northwest of growth, and the recent effects of it, he could see India.
no danger, did pursue the design of war against a XXIII.
nation or sect of religion in its infancy, from whom
he had received no injury, and in whose present That the said Warren Hastings, further to aug- state of government he did not apprehend any ment the power of the said Mahrattas, and to mischief whatsoever ; and finding the council fixed
and determined on not disbanding the frontier ment thereof. For his first proposal was to withregiments, and thinking, that therein he had found draw the company's troops from the vizier's country an advantage, he did ground thereon the following on the pretence of relieving him from the burthen proposition :
of that establishment, but in reality with a view ** If the expence (of the frontier troops) is to of facilitating the Mahratta pretensions on that “ be continued, it may be surely better continued province, which would then be deprived of the “ for some useful purpose, than to keep up the means of defence. And when the council rejected
parade of a great military corps, designed merely the said proposal on the express ground of danger “ to lie inactive in its quarters. On this ground to the province by withdrawing from the Mahrattas “ therefore, and on the supposition premised, I the restraint of our troops, the said Hastings, find“ revert to my original sentiments in favour of ing his first scheme in favour of the Mahrattas “ the prince's plan; but as this will require some against the provinces dependent on the company
qualification in the execution of it, I will state defeated by the refusal of the council to concur in my recommendation of it in the terms of a pro- the said measure of withdrawing the troops, did
position, viz. that if it shall be the resolution then endeavour to obtain the same purpose in a c of the board to continue the detachment now different way; and instead of leaving the troops, “ under the command of Colonel Sir John Cum- according to the intention and policy of the
ming at Furruckabad ; and if the prince Mirza council, as a check to the ambition and progress “ Jehander Shåh shall apply, with the authority of the Mahrattas, he proposed to employ them
of the king, and the concurrence of Madajee in the actual furtherance of those schemes of ag“ Scindia, for the assistance of an English military grandizement, of which his colleagues were jea“ force to act in conjunction with him, to expel lous, and which it was the object of their reso“ the Seiks from the territories, of which they have lution to counteract. “ lately possessed themselves in the neighbour“ hood of Delhi, it may be granted, and such a
XXVII. portion of the said detachment allotted to that “ service as shall be hereafter judged adequate That in the whole of the letters, negociations, " to it.”
proposals, and projects of the said Warren HastXXVI.
ings, relative to the Mogul, he did appear to pur
sue but one object, namely, the aggrandizement of That the said, Warren Hastings did, in the said the lately hostile and always dangerous power of proposal, endeavour to circumvent and overreach the Mahrattas; and did pursue the same by means the council general, by converting an apparent highly dishonourable to the British character for and literal compliance with their resolution into a honour, justice, candour, plain-dealing, moderareal and substantial opposition to and disappoint- tion, and humanity.
XIX. LIBEL ON THE COURT OF DIRECTORS.
ration, and to treat the said court of directors, his
lawful masters, with respect. That Warren Hastings, Esquire, was, during the whole of the year 1783, a servant of the East
II. India company, and was bound by the duties of that relation not only to yield obedience to the That the said Warren Hastings did print and orders of the court of directors, but to give to publish, or cause to be printed and published, at the whole of their service an example of submis- Calcutta in Bengal, the narrative of his transacsion, reverence, and respect to their authority: tions at Benares, in a letter written at that place, and that if they should in the course of their duty without leave had of the court of directors, in call in question any part of his conduct, he was order to pre-occupy the judgment of the servants bound to conduct his defence with temper and de- in that settlement, and to gain from them a faccency; and while his conduct was under their tious countenance and support, previous to the consideration, it was not allowable to print and judgment and opinion of the court of directors, his publish any of his letters to them, without their lawful superiours. consent first had and obtained ; and he was bound
III. by the same principles of duty, enforced by still more cogent reasons, to observe, in a paper in- That the court of directors having come to certended for publication, great modesty and mode- tain resolutions of fact relative to the engagements