Графични страници
PDF файл

Book V. including the Peshwa, or with Scindia individually. If it included the Peshwa, ^ the Colonel was authorized, to cede every acquisition, made during the war, except the territory of Futteh Sing Guicowar, Lahar, and the fortress of Gualior; and to renounce (but without the surrender of his person) the support of Ragonaut Row. He was instructed to retain Bassein, if it were possible, even with the surrender, in its stead, of all the territory (Salsette with its adjacent islands and the moiety of Baroach excepted), ceded by the treaty of Colonel Upton; but not to allow Bassein itself to be any obstruction to the conclusion of peace.

When the separate treaty was concluded with Scindia, who undertook to mediate with the Mahratta powers, the Governor-General, who had not yet departed from Benares, sent Mr. Anderson, and Mr. Chapman; the former to the court of Scindia, with full powers to negotiate and conclude a peace with the Poonah government; the latter to the court of the Rajah of Berar, to perform what was in his power, towards the accomplishment of the same event. Obstacles. "phe business was not very speedily, nor very easily concluded. The Poonah ministers, solicited for peace by the three English Presidencies at once, though they were somewhat shaken in their opposition by the defection of Scindia from the war, by the steadiness with which the English sustained themselves against Hyder, the facility with which they had subdued the Rajah of Benares, and the vigour with which they carried the war almost to the gates of Poonah, were yet encouraged by the pressure which the English sustained, and still more, perhaps, by the eagerness which they manifested for peace.

Colonel Goddard, not yet informed of the steps which had been taken by Mr. Hastings for urging the business of peace with the Poonah ministers, deemed it necessary, in pursuance of the powers for treating and concluding, with which he was invested, to commence a formal negotiation. And he gave the requisite commission to Mr. Watherstone, who arrived at Poonah on the 14th of January, 1782.

The cunning of the Poonah ministers taught them the advantage of negotiating with two ambassadors, acting under separate commissions; who, by the desire of attaining the object for which they were sent, might be expected to bid against one another, and give to the Mahrattas the benefit of an auction in adjusting the terms of peace. They pretended, therefore, to be puzzled with two sets of powers; though they laboured to retain Col. Watherstone, after he was recalled. They put on the forms of distance; and stood upon elevated terms. Scindia, too, who meant to sell his services to the English very dear, was displeased at the commission sent to solicit the interference of the govern- Chap. VII. ment of Berar. The extensive sacrifices, however, which the English consented to make, the unsteadfast basis on which the power of the leaders at Poonah was placed, and the exhausted state of the country, from the long continuance of its internal struggles, as well as the drain produced by the English war, triumphed over all difficulties; a cessation of hostilities was effected early in March; and a treaty was concluded on the 17th of May.

Not only the other territories which the English had acquired during the war, Treaty, but Bassein itself, the city also of Ahmedabad, and all the country in Guzerat which had been gained for Futty Sing, were given up; and the two brothers, the Guicowars, were placed in the same situation, both with respect to one another, and with respect to the Peshwa, as they stood in previous to the war. Even of the territory which had been confirmed to the English by the treaty of Colonel Upton, they agreed to surrender their pretensions to a part (yielding annually three lacs of rupees) which had not yet come into their possession when the war was renewed. And all their rights in the city and territory of Baroach, valued at 200,000/. a-year, were resigned, by a separate agreement, to Scindia and his heirs for ever. To Scindia was also given up, by the liberty of seizing it, the territory including the fort of Gualior, of the Rana of Gohud; who had joined the English, but, as usual in India with the petty princes, who choose their side from the hope of protection on the one hand and the dread of plunder on the other, had been neither very able nor very willing, to lend great assistance. Having given offence by his defect of service, and created suspicions by his endeavours to effect a separate reconciliation with Scindia ; he was, in adjusting the terms of the treaty with Scindia, left to his fate. The amity of Scindia was purchased, by still further sacrifices, which evince but little foresight. The project of Scindia for invading the territories of the Mogul Emperor, those of Nujeef Khan, and those of other chiefs in the province of Delhi and the adjoining regions, was known and avowed: And it was, intentionally, provided, that no obstruction, by the treaty with the English, should be offered to the execution of those designs.*

* The letter of instructions of the Governor-General to Col. Muir says, "We are under no engagements to protect the present dominions of the King, or those of Nudjiff Khan, and the Rajah of Jaynagur; and if peace is settled betwixt Madajee Scindia and us, I do not desire that he should be restrained in carrying into execution any plans which he may have formed against them; at the same time, I think it necessary to caution you against inserting any thing in the treaty, which may expressly mark either our knowledge of his views or concurrence in them. Book V. All that was stipulated in behalf of Ragonaut Row was a period of four "~~^^~J months, in which he might choose a place for his residence. After that period the English agreed to afford him neither pecuniary nor any other support. The Peshwa engaged, on the dangerous condition of his residing within the dominions of Scindia, where he was promised security, to allow him a pension of 25,000 rupees per month.

An article was inserted respecting Hyder Ali, to which we have scarcely information to enable us to attach any definite ideas. The Mahrattas engaged, that within six months after the ratification of the treaty, he should be compelled to relinquish to the English, and their allies, all the places which he had taken from them during the war: But neither did the Mahrattas perform, nor did the English call upon them to perform, any one act toward the fulfilment of this condition. The English, on their part, engaged that they would never make war upon Hyder till he made war upon them; an engagement to which they as little expected that the Mahrattas would call upon them to adhere.*

It will be sufficient for us (and Scindia ought to be satisfied with the latitude implied in it) if he is only restricted in the treaty from making encroachments on our own territory, and those of our allies." Second Report, ut supra, App. No. 1. By the way, it may here be remarked, how enormous a difference exists between the obligations of fealty which Mr. Hastings imposed upon himself (as representative of the Company) towards his undoubted Sovereign the Mogul; and the obligations which, as supposed sovereign of Cheyte Sing, he exacted (on the same ground) from that unfortunate chief. Vide supra, p. 618.

* In the twentieth article of charge, we have Mr. Burke's view of the case. He says, that Mr. Hastings did wish to engage with the Mahrattas in a plan for the conquest and partition of Mysore; that in order to carry this point, he exposed the negotiation to many difficulties and delays; that the Mahrattas, who were bound by an engagement with Hyder to make no peace with the English in which he was not included, pleaded this sacred obligation; but Hastings undertook to instruct even the Mahrattas in the arts of crooked faith, by showing how they might adhere to the forms of their engagement, while they violated the substance; and what is most heinous of all, that Hastings, having effected the assent of the Mahrattas to the article which is inserted in the treaty, and led by his desire of conquest, opposed obstructions to the conclusion of a peace with the son and successor of Hyder Ali; that it was for this reason he endeavoured to bind the hands of the Presidency of Fort St. George, by withholding his authority from the negotiation; that it was not till after a long experience of the total absence of any intention on the part of the Mahrattas, to engage with him in his schemes upon Mysore, and till he was assured of the fact by his agent at the court of Scindia, that his late and reluctant assent to the negotiation was obtained; and that, after the peace was concluded, and ratified by the Supreme Council, from which he was absent, and of which, by reason of his absence, he formed not a part, he endeavoured to break it, or at least exposed it wantonly to the greatest danger of being broken, by insisting that its formal conclusion and ratification should be of none effect, and that

The Mahrattas also agreed, and to this the imaginations of the English C»ap.vii. attached a high importance, that with the exception of the ancient Portuguese ^' establishments, they would permit no other nation, except the English, to open with them any friendly intercourse, or to erect a factory within their dominions.

The terms of this agreement, the gentlemen of the Presidency of Bombay arraigned as inadequate, nay humiliating; and declared, that had the negotiation been left to them and to Goddard, who best knew the state of the Mahratta government, and with what facility it might have been induced to lower its tone, a far more favourable treaty might have certainly been obtained.

it should be opened again for the purpose of inserting the useless, if not mischievous, formality of an article, admitting as a party the Nabob of Arcot. These imputations receive all the confirmation, conveyed by an answer, which, passing them over in silence, appears to admit them.


Burdens sustained by the Nabob of OudeHis Complaints—How received by the EnglishMr. Bristow removed from OudeAgreement between Mr. Hastings and the Nabob—The Begums despoiled—Whether the Begums incited InsurrectionAlleged Oppressions of Colonel HannayThe head Eunuchs of the Begums torturedA Present of ten Lacs given to Mr. Hastings by the NabobGovernor-General accuses Middleton, and replaces BristowTreatment received by Fyzoolla KhanDecision by the Court of Directors, relative to the BegumsSet at nought by Mr. Hastings Governor-GeneraVs new Accusations against Mr. BristowGovernorGeneraVs Plan to remove the Residency from OudeGovernor-General repeats his Visit to OudeResigns the GovernmentFinancial Results of his AdministrationIncidents at Madras.

Book V. The next of the great transactions, to which the presence of the Governor——v—-' General, in the upper provinces, gave immediate existence, was the memorable Situation of arrangement which he formed with the Nabob of Oude. In his payments to the Company, that Nabob had fallen deeply in arrear; and the extreme pecuniary distress endured by the Company,* rendered it necessary to devise the most effectual means for obtaining what he owed. His country, however, had, by misgovernment, fallen into the greatest disorder: The Zemindars were almost every where in a state of disobedience; the country was impoverished; and the disposition of the people; either deserting it, or pining with want; threatened the evils, or promised the blessings, of a general revolt. f Before the connexion between the English and Oude, its revenue had exceeded three millions sterling, and was levied without being accused of deteriorating the country. In the year 1779, it did not exceed one half of that sum, and in the subsequent years fell

* Even the pay of the troops was, every where, four and five months in arrear. + The Minute in which the Governor-General introduced the subject of his journey to the upper provinces, begins in these words; "The province of Oude having fallen into a state of great disorder and confusion, its resources being in an extraordinary degree diminished, and the Nabob Asoph ul Dowla," &c. Tenth Report of the Select Committee in 1781, App. No. 2.


« ПредишнаНапред »