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Transactions affecting the interests of the State were LECTURE invalid unless registered by him.'
The canoongoe was remunerated by a russoom or com- His emolu. mission of 21 per cent. on the amount shown by his vouchers to have been collected :but in some cases a grant of revenue was substituted for this commission. Thus many canoongoes or despandeahs in Southern India claimed to hold meerasy, hereditary villages free of revenue in substitution for their russoom, or they claimed to hold at a low fixed rent, such a tenure being called bilmookta. Following the example of the zemindars and other officers, the canoongoes contrived to appropriate more than their proper allowances; especially in later times when they became underrenters in some parts, and almost zemindars in other parts.5
The office had fallen very much into disuse before Bri- Abolition and tish times, particularly in Bengal, and it was abolished in the office. Bengal and Behar at the Perpetual Settlement in 1793 (July 5). An attempt was made afterwards to revive the functions of the canoongoe, and the office was re-established in 1817, but it was then too late : the old race of canoongoes had died out, and the gap in the records could not be filled up. The office was therefore again abolished in 1828.8
"Fifth Report, Vol. I, 19, 143; Vol. II, 12, 79, 157. Harington's Analysis, Vol. III, 428. Orissa, Vol. II, 217, 237. For full details of the accounts kept by the canoongoes, see Fifth Report, Vol. I, 219, Galloway's Law and Constitution of India, 282, 283, and Harington's Analysis, Vol. II, 69.
? Fifth Report, Vol. II, 157.
Ib., Vol. I, 20, 23; Vol. II, 12.
* Land Tenure by a Civilian, 123.
The abolition of this office at the Perpetual Settlement went upon the supposition that, the assessment being permanently fixed, the Government would no longer have any interest in ascertaining the exact resources of the zemindars. It was found however to be required for many other purposes, particularly for the protection of the ryots, and its abolition was soon regretted ; the more so as the usefulness of the office in Benares and the Ceded and Conquered Provinces, where it had been retained,' was demonstrated by the results. A similar office has once more been established in Bengal and Behar by Sir George Campbell ; who says that this “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." The putwarry. The office of the putwarry has never been abolished.
His functions were similar to those of the canoongoe; to whom he supplied the materials for the pergunnah records. The putwarry also bore various titles in different parts of the country. In some parts he was called a koolkurny, and in others a curnum. We have seen that the putwarry was one of the village officers : the office was consequently an hereditary one ;t but there was as usual in Hindoo
"Fifth Report, Vol. I, 19.
Administration Report for 1872–73, Introduction, p, 14. 3 Fifth Report, Vol. II, 12, 157. Harington's Analysis, Vol. II, 67. Steele's Deccan Castes, 205. Evidence of Lieut.-Colonel Sykes before the Select Committee of the House of Commons (1832), 2173. Compare the tullattie in Guzerat:--Evidence of Lieut.-Colonel Barnewall before the same Committee, 1734.
* Fifth Report, Vol. II, 12, 300. Patton's Asiatic Monarchies, 118. Directions for Revenue Officers, 179.
offices a mixture of election with hereditary right: indi- LECTURE cating probably a period when the office was purely elective. As in Europe so also in India the hereditary principle seems to have gradually grown up: an office originally conferred by choice or election went usually at a later stage to the heir of the previous occupant if found qualified, and at a still later stage was claimed as hereditary, its original elective character being however still asserted, and in exceptional cases acted upon by the dismissal of the officer. This was the case with the headman, who like the putwarry owed his position to a mixture of hereditary right and choice by the village. The putwarry also was appointed originally by the village with the sanction of the State ; but in later times the zemindar claimed to appoint; the village having so far declined in influence as to have retained of its former right of choice only the barren privilege of approving the zemindar's choice.
There was a putwarry to every village; of which he was his duties. the accountant and record-keeper? He kept accounts showing the live and dead stock owned by each cultivator, the quantity and quality of land occupied, and the description and rotation of crops raised. He also kept accounts of the amount of revenue and cesses payable by each, and of the amount paid, and the balance remaining due. From these accounts the hustabood or detailed statement of the past and present sources of revenue of the village, and the jumma-wasil-bakee papers, or abstract of the revenue payable, the amount paid and the unpaid balance
Fifth Report, Vol. I, 143. Harington's Analysis, Vol. II, 67. Land Tenure by a Civilian, 121. Ayeen Akbery, Vol. I, 358.
: Fifth Report, Vol. I, 143. Harington's Analysis, Vol. III, 428. Directions for Revenue Officers, 179.
at the end of the year, were drawn up. These when drawn up and recorded, were copied and forwarded to the office of the canoongoe, who also recorded them and furnished a copy thereof to the zemindar. The putwarry is spoken of in the Ayeen Akbery; and he together with the mohurrir is directed to keep his accounts in the same manner as the karkun. The aumil is enjoined to compare the accounts and to affix his seal, the karkun, mohurrir, and putwarry retaining copies of their respective documents. When the accounts of the village crops are completed it is ordered that they shall be subjoined to the montijee (or account of assets); and after being authenticated by the karkun and putwarry, they are to be forwarded to the presence every week. In places where the kunkoot system prevailed, that is, the payment of revenue upon a valuation of the actual crop whether realised or expected, it was the putwarry's duty to assist the headman in making an estimate of the crop. This officer was designed to be a check upon the malgoozar ;but in some cases he became himself an under-renter, and even a zemindar like the canoongoe.5
He was paid like the canoongoe by a russoom. He received a quarter of an anna in every rupee of money revenue, and a quarter of a seer in the maund of revenue paid in kind, besides receiving a few rupees out of the
mils of the putwarry's albard and Tenant, 29
· Fifth Report, Vol. I, 19, 143, 164; Vol. II, 11, 13, 300, .353.
? Ayeen Akbery, Vol. I, 381.
THE PUTWARRY'S EMOLUMENTS. 165 village fund (deh khurcha).' The russsoom of the putwarry LECTURE and canoongoe was before Akbar's time one per cent. each on the collections; at that period the canoongoe's one per cent. was abolished, and those officers were paid a salary of from twenty to fifty rupees a month according to their rank, and had a jageer granted to them. The putwarry's russoom was however continued. In some parts of the country the putwarry also had a jageer, or assignment or remission of revenue. This appears to have been the practice to a considerable extent in Bengal. In the Deccan they had not generally assignments of revenue (known in that part of the country as enams), but occupied, probably as original meerassee or khoodkasht ryots of the village, some meeras or khoodkasht land. The putwarry's perquisites or huks, with his jageer or enam, were included in the generic denomination of wuttun. This was sometimes enjoyed in turns by the members of the joint family of the putwarry; but in some places the eldest son took the duty with the huks, and the meeras land, which as I have suggested was probably to some extent independent of the office, was equally shared between the family. When this meeras land was exempted from revenue, the exemption would be part of the wuttun, and would attach as an enam to the office.* Having now described the fiscal machinery, I proceed to Mode of assess
ment. consider the way in which it acted in actually fixing the amount of assessment and in collecting the revenue. And
Steele's Deccan Castes, 205. Land Tenure by a Civilian, 84. ? Ayeen Akbery, Vol. I, 358.
Fifth Report, Vol. I, 341; Vol. II, 12, 13, 89, 90, 95, 155, 157. Wbinfield's Landlord and Tenant, 34. Harington's Analysis, Vol. II, 65, 235 (n).
* Steele's Deccan Castes, 205.