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selves good civil Officers; and we doubt whether any vast amount of administrative talent must necessarily exist in the venerable brains of every Brigadier. After all, the distinctive character of a Military Government is not, that army rank is the rule in all departments; and that the two great branches, the civil and the military, are to be inseparably connected; nor does the mere employment of military officers justly give a Government that name. If it did, what a vast portion of India is still under military rule! When therefore we talk of a Military Government, we mean one that is so in its principles of action-one that is divested of forms and technicalities; where expediency is the great moving principle; where the summary proceedings of military law in the field are the temporary law of the land; where there is no civil power; where armed and disciplined forces take the duties of the police ; and where the institutions are temporary-their duration depending on the military operations going on in the country: in short, a Government of physical, as opposed to one of moral, force. The object of such a Government ought only to be to prepare the way Civil Government. To argue that it was required in Scinde permanently, would be to declare that Scinde is still unconquered. To
To say that the Scindians would gladly retain it, would be absurd; for there is nothing in its nature congenial to their habits and institutions. But we need not argue further, for the Government in Scinde was not Military beyond the year 1845. Afterwards, it was an attempt, and a very unsuccessful one, to amalgamate the Civil and the Military; and it is to be hoped, for the sake of India, that such administrative experiments will not be suffered to occur again.
We have alluded in several places, to the confusion and want of checks, observable in all the departments. A plan was adopted to remedy this; viz., periodical (weekly) diaries were required from every person at the head of an office, which were perused by the Governor. These contained the subject matter of every English letter received in, and despatched from, the office, and a similar brief record of every Persian paper so received and despatched, also of purwanahs and urzis. Rubularis were unknown in Scinde. It is evident that this plan must have caused great labour in an office, the English duties of which devolved on the European Officer and his clerk. The labour, however, would have been of slight moment, if the system acted as any real check ; but, except in glaring cases of irregularity, it failed in being of any general utility. In such a brief record, it was impossible to enter into the mcrits of a case; and the subject-matter, as recorded, might be very different from the real contents of the purwanah, or urzí, through the total inadvertence of the transmitting officer. Thus the following might be the entry :-"To the Kardar of so and so, informing him, that a lease had been given to A. B., granting him twenty bigahs of land in village D., rent free for two years, and subsequently to be taxed at the usual rate.” Now who was to judge of the expediency of this lease, or of the circumstances attending it? What check was this brief memorandum ? In some cases, however, it acted well, as in the following supposed entry "To the police officer of Allababad, blaming him for the long detention in confinement of Kadir Buksh, accused of theft, without reporting." Now, if such an entry as this appeared frequently, and served to indicate an existing evil, it might lead to a circular order, laying down some rule for the timely reporting of such detentions. But one letter would have answered as well; and the remedy would have been applied at an earlier date. In fact, the diary was a good means of testing the qualifications of different officers, by shewing their attention to their duties and to minute details : but it was, and could be, no real check.
At length, in October, 1847, Sir Charles Napier left Scinde for England, and was succeeded in the Civil department by Mr. Pringle of the Bombay Civil Service, under the title of Commissioner of Scinde. Sir Charles, on making over the province, proclaimed it to be no longer under a Military, but under a Civil, Government: and great changes were naturally expected. But these came not so rapidly: every thing remained as before : even the Military Commissions continued to be the chief Crimi. nal Courts, although, we believe, they were thenceforth illegal. A report indeed obtained circulation, that Mr. Pringle saw nothing requiring immediate change, and that the then existing system met with his cordial approbation. This, however, was given out so immediately after his arrival, that we are not inclined to attach more credit to it, than to the alleged extempore satisfaction of Sir George Clerk with the Scinde Police : and Mr. Pringle's subsequent cautious conduct does not warrant our acceptation of this, certainly premature, opinion. However, whether by choice or necessity, no radical changes were made. But it soon became apparent, that the vigour and energy of the head were gone : and this fact speaks volumes against a system of Government, the success of which depended on so precarious a circumstance, as a change of Governors. Vigour was the main spring of the former rule, and alone had given it whatever it possessed of good
working and success. A want of it by degrees crept into all departments; and what had been bad before, became worse now. As no change in revenue matters, which had been so long looked for, seemed likely to take place, the landholders resorted with greater freedom to their only resource ; viz., extensive combinations with the Kardars, and other native revenue officers. Even supposing Mr. Pringle to have had the option and inclination of placing the revenue administration on a firmer and more efficient principle, he could not have carried it out without competent ministers; and those of the old school would not easily have been broken in for the work. Besides, we believe, the powers, with which the Commissioner was vested, were not so ample as some have supposed. He certainly conferred one great benefit on the people, by throwing wider open the door of appeal. This soon became known: and his Court was overwhelmed. But these appeals were not (as they ought to have been) direct. They were forwarded by dâk to the Commissioner's Persian Interpreter--an excellent officer of Her Majesty's army: the subject-matter was written in English on the back, and the Interpreter passed the order received from the Commissioner, in English, or Persian, on the face. If the Courts of the Western Presidency at all assimilate to those of the Eastern, Mr. Pringle must have had certain muscular twitchings, on receiving the proceedings, which emanated from some of the Courts of Scinde. They consisted, for the most part, of the original petition of plaint, with the decree written across it, or in a corner, varied at times by the annexation of a Scindi scrawl, supposed to be a bond. At all events, a stricter adherence to form was the consequence, and it may be supposed, in many cases, a more impartial judgment. Beyond this, and a few other patchings, no radical change has been as yet introduced.
An attempt has been made towards a settlement: but it has failed. The reasons are obvious. The mere limitation of the Government demand for a term of years will not render it popular or advantageous, unless the interests of all parties in the estate are so clearly defined and secured to them, as to render the advantages resulting from such limitation, not a matter of scramble and speculation, but of fairness and certainty. This can only be effected by a record, however brief, of the rights of all individuals concerned—and this for each village. The primary settlement of a country, though carried on without such accurate data as those made at future periods, is, perhaps, of all the most important : and, it seems to us, should not only never exceed, but should even fall short of the rates, which appear in the first instance to the settlement officer to be just. Nor should his work be done at his Sudder Station, but at the villages--too much stress not being laid on the absolute returns of former years, but due allowances made for the nature of the lands, and other local circumstances affecting each community. Nothing of this nature, however, can be expected in Scinde, so long as the present race of Kardars remain in power. It is against their interest, and that of the landholders in combination with them, to aid the introduction of such a system. The province of Scinde (as we said before) is not of greater extent than would form a good sized Commissionership, containing three subordinate districts, or four at the outside, with a district officer and two assistants, civil or military, covenanted or uncovenanted, in each. Well-paid Tahsildars would occupy the posts of the Deputy Collectors now existing. The combination would be broken, and the settlement of the country effected. If a cash payment was found impracticable at first, the Jumma might be fixed, partly in cash and partly in kind; but the inconvenience and loss entailed on the farmers by this mode of payment would become practically so apparent to them, that, we confidently believe, its adoption would not be necessary after a few seasons. The regular payment of instalments, a matter hitherto totally neglected in Scinde, would not be the least advantage resulting both to Government and to the people from this system. Another great practical benefit would be the greater efficiency of the establishment, and the carrying out of all orders, instead of their dwindling down, as is now too frequently the case, into mere delegations of authority. The wish of the Collector would be the turning point, and not that of the Kardar.
“ Sit annulus tuus, non ut vas aliquod, sed tamquam ipse tu, non minister alienæ voluntatis, sed testis tuæ.”- Ciceronis Epist.
We must now bring our remarks to a close : but before doing so, we would remove an objection, which might be brought against us, for an overweening estimate of the merits of Civilians, as a class. The inefficiency, which we have had to notice in the executive officers in Scinde, was not intended to be brought against them as military, but as untrained, officers : and our remarks would apply with equal force to bers of the Civil Service, placed in such important situations, without previous training in subordinate posts. We are not of those, who consider a two years' residence at Haileybury as necessarily making a youth more absolutely qualified for
civil duties, than his brother, the soldier. According to the disposition of the lad, it may or may not act beneficially on him, by implanting habits of industry and study, which will tend to lead him through his career in life with honour to himself and utility to his fellow-creatures. But the same objects are attained by the soldier, who receives the liberal education of a gentleman (and what soldier does not in these days ?) and we believe the one to be equally qualified with the other for civil duties, 80 far as education is concerned. Let the young man, fresh from Haileybury, and the ensign, from his regiment, come together in India, and commence training--and all will rest on their relative natural abilities, industry, and perseverance. According to that, ten years will see the civilian and soldier, either neck and neck, or distanced the one by the other. The names of some of the ablest of India's civilians are coupled with a military title; and in some cases too, their brows are adorned with the laurels of the hero. We cannot but think that all impartial men will agree with us as to the inefficiency of either the untrained civilian, or the untrained soldier, when placed in civil charge of a district.
In conclusion, we trust that we have, to a certain extent, succeeded in delineating the general nature of an administration, which was truly one by itself-which owed all its advantages to its illustrious designer, and many of its failings to causes, over which he had no controul-in which weakness, inefficiency, and injustice were strangely blended, with vigour, talent and philanthropy; and in which the candid observer will find so much to censure, and so much to praise.