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to that line. To effect this change it was necessary so to adjust salaries that it would not be necessary to promote every Magistrate-Collector of a district to be a District Judge for the sake of the increase in salary. The LieutenantGovernor's wish has been to equalise the salaries of the two lines, and the arrangement sanctioned has made a large approach to this object. We thus have some Judges somewhat younger than in former days, but as the LieutenantGovernor has pointed out, these men will seldom be of less than 12 or 15 years' service, and 35 to 40 years of age, and they will in the end be much more experienced as judicial officers than if their promotion had been delayed. On the other hand, we have many Magistrate-Collectors of greater experience and weight than formerly, who have been longer in charge of and know more of their districts, and who
receiving: better salaries are con
Peruianency of Officers. , , , ii ± 1
tent to remain m their posts much longer than formerly. So far the desired object has already been achieved in a very high degree.
On the other hand, it must be admitted that in the inferior grades of the service, covenanted and uncovenanted, permanency has not yet been attained. The present leave and other service rules are so favorable to change, the varieties of climate and of amenities or disamenities in Bengal stations afford such temptations to seek change, the habit of going frequently to Europe has so much grown among the European servants of Government, and so many of the native servants so persistently strive by every device to avoid and get rid of out-of-the-way and disagreeable stations, that it is very hard indeed for those who administer so great a Government with such a mass of Government servants, to hold its own against so many who for one reason or other seek change. So many interests are set in motion, that it is a matter of extreme difficulty to avoid the necessity of making several changes when a vacancy occurs before things settle down. It is, in fact, a sort of game of chess, as it were, in which the Government is very unequally pitted against a great many players; and it is hardly possible to give to each move the attention and the calculation of contingencies which is necessary to avoid being taken at a disadvantage by one or other of them. The Lieutenant-Governor has been, he may say, shocked to find how many changes have occurred during the year among the sub-divisional and other subordinate officials of some districts, in spite of all his struggles to avoid change.
The scheme for providing subordinate executive estab
Subordinate executive establish- Hshments Under the Sub-divi
ment8- sional Officers, which was men
tioned in the last report, having now been sanctioned by the Government of India and approved by Her Majesty's Government in England, has been recently carried into effect. Consequently we have an executive machinery, such as has never existed in Bengal before. Our local Magistrates are no longer almost entirely judicial in their functions. A large proportion of the districts of these provinces have been, and when the scheme is complete all will be, sub-divided into three, four, five, or six divisions, and each outlying sub-division is in charge of a selected officer, who has under him an assistant available for all executive and some judicial work, and one or two subordinate executive officers. He is thus no longer completely tied to his head-quarters office, and is now able either himself or through his deputies to make local inquiries and to become acquainted with the country and the people. A certain proportion of these sub-divisions are entrusted to young Civil Servants who have served their first apprenticeship, and to whom these semi-independent charges are the very best experience ; while most of these charges are held by those native and other uncovenanted officers who are deemed best fitted for such duties.
One of the officers of the sub-divisional establishment is called ' Canoongoe,' a title taken from the earlier regulations of the days of the Permanent Settlement and the generation following, in which, as is well known, the Canoongoe was designed to occupy so important a position as head of the machinery by which full information regarding tenures and rents and agricultural affairs was to be collected, the landholders and village accountants being bound to render their annual returns to the Canoongoes. It is not to be supposed tliat all the functions of the Canoongoes (who were for long altogether wanting except in Orissa) can be performed by the single officer attached to a large sub-division; but now that the Road Cess Act has revived in another form the original and fundamental obligation of the landholders to render an account of subordinate holdings and ryots' rents to the Canoongoes, it seemed appropriate that the Government should, as far as may be, fulfil its obligation by appointing an officer to receive these returns as Canoongoe. The arrangement may be taken as an earnest and beginning of a return to the old system under which we sought to have some knowledge of affairs connected with the land, and to secure some system of reliable account between the tillers of the soil and the landholders, inferior and superior.
In all these reforms connected with the district executive, the Lieutenant-Governor has been fortunate enough to obtain the approval and support of the present Viceroy and his Government, and to that support he owes it that he has been able to carry out his plans without delay.
According to the design mentioned in the last report,
Th. N.uv. Civil ser^c. the opportunity afforded by the
creation or the subordinate appointments to which allusion has just been made has been used to put the Native Civil Service on a better footing. The Lieutenant-Governor has much felt that with a large and increasing supply of highly-educated young men, it was most undesirable that the greater proportion of them should waste their time in idleness, in the hope that by favour or interest there would fall to a very few among their numbers a few appointments of a grade far beyond their position and experience, and which, leaving comparatively little for them to aspire to in after years, would not content in the long run men thus so prematurely promoted. Sir George Campbell has, therefore, carried out the design of insisting that educated young men desirous of entering the civil service of the Government should do so in a position suited to their years and experience. And he has also thought it right that the road to promotion should be opened to men serving in the inferior grades, whose character, experience, and education, fitted them for promotion. The system of special education for the civil service and examination in the subjects most likely to fit a man for such a career, which was previously indicated, has therefore been systematised and carried out. The examination is not a properly competitive examination for the available appointments, but candidates are examined and classed; only those who have passed are eligible for appointments, ana great regard will be had to the comparative results of the examination in selecting young men from among them. The Government has pledged itself that promotion to the higher appointments shall be made from among the passed men who, having entered the lower grades, have there shown practical capacity and merit, and that Deputy Magistracies and such like appointments shall not in future be given to inexperienced outsiders.
The latter part of Chapter I. deals with subjects which are mainly connected with land tenures, and in Chapter III will be found an account of various proceedings which come under the head 'Administration of the Land,' including the waste land question.
It was previously mentioned that the Road Cess valuations
The relations between zemindars and have involved a record of tenures
"y0*8- and rents such as we have
never before had in Bengal. The necessity for some such record has become every day more apparent. The questions arising between landholders and ryots would probably have necessitated the maintenance of some regular system of public record and account even if there had been no question of taxation. Allusions were made in the last report to the illegal cesses and dues levied by the zemindars. These questions have become still more prominent during the past year. An account of what has occurred is given in Chapter I, pages 20 to 39.
The inquiries in Orissa have brought to light a state of „, , ,M things which could hardly have
Illegal cesses and taxes. ■. ° •... , i i 1
been credited; so completely were the rights of the ryots, once well established and formally recorded, over-ridden by the superior landholders. In that province the state of things was entirely different from Bengal. A regular settlement had been made some thirtyfive years ago. The rights of the ryots were not only acknowledged, but ascertained, recorded, and secured by documents issued by Government direct. But the Bengal Board of Revenue entertained a strong dislike to the old system of public record through village and pergunnah accountants, which has been maintained in other parts of India.. In Orissa these indigenous institutions had been in full force, but they were suppressed and disused. It has consequently happened that the records made thirty-five years ago have never been continued or kept up, and the inquiries recently made have shown that the landholders, who derived from the settlement very limited rights, have systematically set themselves to destroy and obliterate the rights of the ryots, have deprivea them of their titles, changed their lands, and largely raised their rents, contrary to the pledges of the Government. In Bengal, where no records were made, the ryots have to a certain extent profited by the very common ignorance of the zemindars of everything connected with their estates, and the present relations between zemindar and ryot have only gradually grown out of the old relations of tax-farmers and peasant holders. It was mentioned in the last report that the zemindars have not generally sued in the Courts for rack-rents, and that they have to some extent substituted irregular and illegal cesses and taxes. It was mentioned that an inquiry on this latter subject had been undertaken. It was found that in truth these irregular levies were much larger, more numerous, and more universal, than the Lieutenant-Governor had at all suspected. Although at the time of the Permanent Settlement most of such demands were abolished as far as the law could abolish them, and all that remained were amalgamated with the rent, a fresh crop of them has since grown up with a rank luxuriance.
In addition to the extra cesses levied on the cultivators, there is a system of levying transit and market dues, of old native origin, but which had been formally abolished before the Bengal settlement was made permanent. Compensation for the loss of these receipts was made to the zemindars and is still paid to them, while all future exactions other than regular rents for lands, shops, and buildings, were strictly prohibited, as explained in the last report. It turns out, however, that taxes of this kind are still very abundantly levied even by people who receive compensation for their abolition.
The Lieutenant-Governor has felt himself unable to deal radically with these abuses till he has authority for doing so from the Government of India, and is assured of support by legislation, such as is required to carry out the spirit and intent of the old laws of the permanent settlement, the machinery of which has become rusty and insufficient. As respects the cesses levied in addition to rent, he has himself doubts whether we can interfere with a strong hand in Bengal to the general advantage, till we take up, deal with, and revise the relations between landholders and ryots as a whole, and he has accordingly issued the instructions which will be found in Chapter I.
In Orissa, however, where the rights of the ryots were once denned, Sir George Campbell thinks that we are bound to interfere to restore and protect these rights, and to revive and continue the old system of record. He has strongly recommended a measure of that kind to the Government of India, but that Government has not yet acceded to the proposal. The most important part of the correspondence will be found in Chapter I.