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Besides there passed, travelling,
287 Behlis ......
617 9,950 1,798
It is almost needless to say, that the main line of communication in the time of the Mogul Emperors was much the same as at present. Kos Minars, those imperial mile-stones, are to be found at intervals: and, every here and there, the broken arches of a bridge, or the ruins of a grand serai, show - that the Emperors were imbued with the road-making spirit of Appius or Terentius of old. There are also numerous defiles and passes, where the bandits of yore used to hold their rendezvous. At the pass of Chuperghuta, about twenty-five miles from Cawnpore, there still survives the proverb “ Delhi ki kumai, Chuperghuta men gunwai,” (Whatever is earned at Delhi, is taken away at Chuperghuta). But of late years, robberies, and indeed crimes of all kinds, have been rare on the Grand Trunk Road. Since the year 1848, numerous measures have been adopted for the protection and comfort of travellers. Besides the halting grounds for troops, serais have been erected at convenient intervals, and provision depôts have been established by Government, which stations its own contractors there, and compels them to conform to rules framed for the prevention of extortion or exorbitance. So that the traveller finds board and lodging, and accommodation for man and beast at road-side inns, provided by the state. For the protection of the road, there are fixed at intervals of not less than 2 milest either guard-houses with two watchmen each, or police-stations of greater or smaller calibre, according as the locality might require. Taking the number of the watchmen and of the regular police employed upon the road into consideration, there cannot be much less on an average than one officer, of one kind or other, to every half mile of road. Neighbouring Thanas and Tuhsildaris have been brought, as much as practicable, on to the road. And many of the Tuhsildars have been vested with the powers of deputy magistrates, in order that heinous offences, committed on the road, may be investigated promptly, and petty offences be disposed of, with as little inconvenience as possible to the parties aggrieved.§
• Vide Agra Government Gazette, for April 1848. + Ibid, for July 1850.
Vide arrangements for the Grand Trunk Road, within the limits of the Aligurh district, enjoined for general imitation, in the Agra Government Gazette of July 1850. § Ibid,
Like all other stations in the N. W. Provinces, Cawnpore has its local committee of roads. The funds annually at their disposal consist of 1 per cent. on the Government revenue, levied from the landholders, and a share of the surplus of the General ferry funds of the wbole provinces, apportioned by Government.* The total amounts to about Rs. 27,600 per annum.
There is but one metalled road besides the Trunk Road. But the numerous maps, appended to the statistical report, show that the district is intersected in every direction by unmetalled roads, passable for nine months in the year. These roads are repaired every year, immediately after the cessation of the raing.' Exclusive of the Trunk Road (which is superintended by an Engineer Officer), the aggregate length of road under charge of the committee amounts to 500 miles. The members of the committee are composed partly of European, and partly of Native, gentlemen.
Municipal improvements should not be passed over in silence. In few localities of India is European influence more palpably visible, than in the great cities of the North Western Provinces. The memory of every Anglo-Indian can recall to his imagination, and almost to his senses, the horrors of an Indian city, where the inhabitants are left to their own devices. In the cities of these provinces, the modern traveller would soon perceive, that the race of monarchs, who thought of splendid architecture rather than of the general comfort, has been supplanted by a set of rulers, who, though they cannot vie with their predecessors in structures, which bequeath memorials for posterity to admire, can far surpass them in solid and useful works, which secure public cleanliness, propriety, and health. Noisome alleys have been converted into broad streets lined with shops. Cesspools have been cleaned out; pitfalls filled up; inequalities smoothed down ; the roads have been paved with metal, and intersected with drains. Breadth of street and good drainage, two things of vital consequence and formerly quite unknown in native cities, are invariable characteristics of the principal cities of the N. W. Provinces. Vast must be the effect of these measures on the sanitary condition of the residents. The city of Cawnpore, though of recent origin (it was a village seventy years ago), like all other native cities, grew up in pestilential filth. But the exertions of the magistrates have cleansed the Augean stable. The streets are on an average 24 feet wide, and have drains of masonry running on either side of them. Excavations have been made in the sub
• After payment of expenses, the surplus tolls of all the Government ferries in the N. W. Provinces are thrown into a consolidated fund, and re-distributed among all the districis for local improvements,
urbs, into which filth may be emptied. The water from the drains of the private houses runs into the street drains, and is thence conducted into the main sewers. Every effort is made to keep the public drains as clean and sweet as possible. Besides the regular Police, there is a night watch" kept up and paid by a cess levied on the inhabitants. There is also an establishment entertained for the purpose of keeping the city clean, and paid in the same manner as the night watch. The city is divided into a certain number of muhullas, or wards. In each ward, a committee is formed for the purpose of
apportioning the assessment among the residents ; and there is a central committee for the whole city, to which individuals, considering themselves aggrieved by any of the inferior committees, may appeal, and whose award is final.
In few departments has more signal progress been made than in matters connected with the jails and with prison discipline. A few years ago, most of the jails of the N. W. Provinces were sadly defective. The prisoners were allowed many indulgences and some luxuries, constant intercourse with their friends, and a tolerable immunity from labour. From this point of view, therefore, the jail did not wear a very penal aspect. On the other hand, there was no ventilation, no drainage, no cleanliness, no sanitary arrangements.
All this, combined with habits pre-disposing to disease, caused an undue amount of sickness, and, at many seasons of the year, the inmates suffered extremely from heat and want of air: so that, viewed in this light, these jails became, in a manner contrary to the intentions of their founders, unfortunately penal. But the order of things was reversed. The punishment, intended by a sentence of imprisonment, was not duly administered. At the same time, there was unwillingly inflicted a sad penalty, which the law never contemplated, in the shape of broken health or impaired constitution. Indulgence was substituted for severity ; but in the sanitary department, where everything ought to have conduced to health, if not to comfort, there something worse than discomfort was felt. And further, the sufferings, which were really endured, were just those very pains and penalties, which have no effect on the minds of the class whom it was intended to deter from crime. As long as the imprisoned thief or robber could get his ghi and tobacco and sweet-meats, and enjoy his day-long repose, undisturbed by a call to labour on the roads, he recked not of the close air of his pent-up cell, nor regarded the inroads of disease. Neither were matters of detail attended to. No such thing as classification existed. Civil and criminal prisoners, life prisoners, and prisoners under trial, prisoners with short and long terms, prisoners with and without labour, were all huddled together in one undistinguished crowd. Also the jails were ruinously expensive, and cost much more than good ones. But these evils were swept away in 1844, by the appointment of Mr. W. Woodcock, as inspector of prisons, who has indeed proved himself the Macconochy of these provinces. Jails, which criminals used facetiously to term their “pucka houses," became real penitentiaries, emulating, in a lesser degree, the wholesome terrors of Millbank or Pentonville. Indulgences were abolished; hard labour enforced; dietary fixed; cleanliness, drainage and ventilation introduced. Prison labour was also rendered productive. The prisoners were minutely classified, and the whole jail system was immensely reduced in expence. Thus the jails have been rendered penal in the proper sense of the term. The punishment consists in seclusion, denial of every possible indulgence, and severe toil. On the other hand, for the wretchedness attendant on the old system, has been substituted the health and comfort, which are always consequent upon plain food, regular habits, hard work, a clean abode, and fresh air. The Cawnpore jail seems to afford a fair sample of the improvements, which have been more or less effected in all the jails in the N. W. Provinces. In this jail, all the different classes of prisoners (distinguished by the gradation of punishments awarded to the various kinds of offences) are located in separate wards. Ventilation has been effected by apertures in the ceilings of wards and of cells; open drains have been covered over; and all nuisances have been removed from the yards. The rations fixed in lieu of the money allowance, which used to be given to the prisoners for the purchase of their own food, mainly consist of 1} lbs. of wheaten flour per diem, for able-bodied men on hard labour. This quantum is reduced to 11 for those who are without labour. Each prisoner costs, on the average, Rs. 39-2-11 per annum, or, in round numbers, £3-18-6. Of this, Rs. 18-0-8, or £1-16-0, is consumed in diet. Prison labour is of two kinds that performed inside, and that performed outside the jail; from the former the clothing is made, the flour ground, menial offices performed, and repairs executed. The proceeds of this productive labour are estimated in money value at Rs. 1,542 per annum
Before taking leave of the various subjects treated of in the statistical report, it would not be amiss to say a few words on the products of Cawnpore. These products may, however, be shortly enumerated, and the progress of agricultural science may here, as elsewhere, be designated by the expressive monosyllablem"Nil.” Strange, that while other pations have devoted
their best energies and intelligence to advancing the culture of the soil, India alone-with a civilization cotemporary with the annals of mankind, with an intelligent people, with varied richness and fecundity, governed successively by dynasties sprung from widely distant climes, and able therefrom to introduce a vast diversity of products, if the people would but accept them-should have remained to serve as a land-mark, whereby other countries might measure their progress.
Mention has been preserved of fifty Greek writers on agriculture, whose works were known to the Romans. The writings of the most eminent* among them were translated by order of the Senate; and some of the most illustrious among their statesmen and poets employed their gifted pens on the same subject. The Emperor Charlemagne forced his subjects to experimentalize on seventy-three kinds of trees and plants, and opened a correspondence with Harún-al-Rashíd to obtain specimens of the Caliphate's choicest productions. The magistrates of the Dutch republic officially patronized the introduction of new plants. In our own country, with how many great names is this subject associated; with how many societies, colleges, professorships, periodicals! On the continent, splendid agricultural institutions have been reared, and vast political changes have been wrought, to accomplish this very object. The colonizing nations of Europe have been most sedulous in supplying their colonies with extraneous products. For many plants and fruits the West Indies and South America are indebted to Spain. The French also imported numerous seeds and plants into their colonies, and gave their name to the Bourbon cotton. Our old and present colonies in North America teem with foreign vegetables, sown there by British enterprize ; and American cotton, which India in vain endeavours to rival, is of imported origin.† The same spirit has animated the Government of British India. Similar efforts have been perpetually made, but have been too often attended with different results. The cultivation of some of the most important staples has not progressed, in spite of model farms, botanical gardens, foreign deputations, and scientific apparatus. Notwithstanding the many societies, lectures, and publications, and the presence of European farmers on the spot, Indian agriculture will not advance one step. The same system, which met the gaze of the Macedonian Alexander, the Ğhuznivide Mahomed, the Tartar Baber, and the early European settlers, still puzzles the modern virtuoso with its immutable sameness.
- Facio," says
• Vide Jones, on Rent, Book i. sec. iii. + See the body of facts regarding the progress of scientific culture, collected by Dr. Royle, in his work on the Productive Resources of India.