Графични страници
PDF файл


over and above the agreed jumma, as were realized in the Lkcturk mofussil under that head.1 This is said in another case —to have been so held because the exact sum to be paid was not specified." Again a claim for rusaoom kuzza, or kazee's fees, was held illegal; although the ryot had paid it until a judge by proclamation declared it illegal, and although the assessment at the Decennial Settlement was alleged to have included it.3 On the other hand a claim for dustooree batta and poonia nuzzerana (presents on assessment or on payment of the first instalment of rent) have been held valid, when the cabooleut specified these items; the Court considering that section 3 of Regulation V of 1812, which authorizes the landholders to grant such pottahs as they may think fit, with the proviso that this should not legalize arbitrary or indefinite cesses, legalized customary cesses when specified in the pottah or cabooleut: since the Regulation goes on to provide that, while all stipulations for such arbitrary or indefinite cesses were to be held null and void, the definite clauses of the engagements should be carried into effect, and payment of such sums as were specifically agreed upon enforced. Other illegal cesses that have come before the Courts are purvi-bhika, a present to the zemindar on his son's first eating rice; and the zemindar's claim to a certain proportion of every maund of groor (molasses) manufactured. By Act X of 1859, section 10, and Act VIII of 1869 (B.C.), section 11, exactions beyond the rent specified in the pottah subject the landlord to damages not exceeding double the amount of such exaction.

1 Radha Mohun Surma Chowdhry v. Gungaperahad Chuckerbutty, 7 Sel. Rep., 142. 'Bhoor Fasban v. Khemchand Mahtoon, S. D. A. (1857), 1508. > Luckhee Debea Chowdraiu v. Sheikh Ahta, S. D. A. (1852), 552.

[ocr errors][merged small]



Proportion taken by the State.

Disqualified proprietors.

The jumma, as we have seen, was fixed for ever. The proportion professedly taken from the zemindars was tenelevenths of their rents, leaving them one-tenth of the jumma paid. But the proportion was altered in the course of time, and appears to be now about a half instead of tenelevenths. The zemindaries were allowed to be freely transferred and divided. I shall notice the provisions for division and alienation hereafter. These powers and the fixity of the jumma led to that vast development of undertenures which is so marked a feature of the Bengal land system.

Disqualified zemindars were excluded from the settlement. This disqualification was according to the Regulations of the 12th April 1784,1 founded upon notorious incapacity, legal disability or debt. In the Regulations of the 25th April 1788" the grounds were minority, sex, lunacy, contumacy, notorious profligacy of character, or nonperformance of engagements. And in the Decennial Settlement Regulations, females, idiots, minors, lunatics and others incapable of managing their estates by reason of natural defects or infirmities of whatever nature, and those deemed unfit through notorious profligacy or contumacy, were excluded, provided they were not sharers with qualified proprietors; in which case all were required to join in electing a manager, those disqualified voting through their guardians.* The estates of disqualified proprietors were to be managed by persons appointed by the Government to that trust* The

1 Colebrooke's Supplement, 234.

• lb., 266, 269.

'Regulations of 23rd November 1791, art. 19. Regulation VIII of 1793,8.20.

* Regulations of 23rd November 1791, art. 20, Regulation VIII of 1793, s. 21.


Regulations of 15th July 17911 provide for the establish- Lkcture ment of the Court of Wards for the purpose of taking — charge of such estates; and Regulation X of 17932 lays down rules for the guidance of the Court of Wards. But by Regulation VII of 1796 those provisions which relate to contumacy and profligacy as grounds of exclusion are rescinded.3 The disqualified proprietors had a voice or "were consulted in the choice of a manager until Regulation VII of 1799, section 26, abolished this privilege, as having led to managers being appointed who were totally disregardful of the public interest, and directed that the manager should thenceforth be appointed without any reference to the wishes of the proprietor or to connexion with him. This completed the exclusion of such zemindars as were disqualified.

The zemindars retained those rights known as julkur, Juikur,bunkur,


bunkur, phulkur, &c.: and having come to be regarded in the fight of English landlords these rights came to be treated as incorporeal hereditaments, and transferable separately from the zemindary as well as from the land. It has consequently been held that a julkur right, or a right to dues from fisheries and water, might be thus transferred, and that no proprietary right passed with it * this is in fact restricting the right to its primitive form, but separating it from the zemindary. The same principle has been laid

1 Colebrooke's Supplement, 298.

1 Modified by Regulation L of 1793 as to female proprietors.

* S. 20 of Regulation VIII of 1793, and s. 5, cl. 4, of Regulation X of 1793, are repealed by Regulation VII of 1796.

• Forbes r. Meer Mahomed Hossein, 12 B. L. R., 210, at p. 216. Lukhee Dassee r. Khatima Beebee, 2 Sel. Rep., 51. Suroop Chunder Mozoomdar r. Jardine Skinner & Co., Marsh., 334. Bisseu Lai Dass r. Ranee Khyrunnissa Begum, 1 W. 11., 79.

[ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors][merged small]

down with respect to bunkur, or the right to use all wood of spontaneous growth upon the zemindary.1

The general effect of the Permanent Settlement upon the position of the zemindar was that the zemindar was now detached from the Government, and lost some of his former privileges and "emoluments, while the revenue demanded from him seems to have been very heavy considering the restrictions to which he was theoretically subject. In practice however he continued his exactions in much the same way as before; and from the slender provision made for the protection of the ryots he was enabled to assume a position of preponderating influence, while his ample power of alienation enabled him to elude much of the Government demand.

I come now to consider the position of the subordinate holders or, as we may now call them, tenants. In the earlier times of British rule, the main care of the Government was to protect the ryots and apparently to reduce the zemindars to what was considered their original position; the zemindars in fact seem to have been looked upon as tyrannical officials. The Regulations of the 14th May 17722 for the farming settlement provide that the farmers shall not receive from the ryots more than the amount stipulated for by the pottah; and the directions as to the settlement to be made at the end of the five years contemplated compelling the zemindars to give pottahs,* which as POTTAHS. 335

Position of the




1 Byjnnuth Mojmoodar v. Deen Dyal Gooptu, 2 Sel. Rep., 105.

■ Colebrooke's Supplement, 190.

'lb., 207. Harington's Analysis, Vol. II, 35. For a specimen of a pottah, see Baboo Dbunput Singh v. Oooman Singh, 11 Moore's I. A. 433, at p. 434; and of a .cabooleut, Golam Ali v. Baboo Gopal Lai Thakoor, 9 W. R., 65, at p. 67.

we have seen were seldom given at this time. By the Regu- Lhctcrk lations of the 8th June 1787, the Collectors were directed — to endeavour to fix some mode of fair assessment of the ryots, and to prevent the imposition of new abwabs and taxes.1 The Regulations for the Decennial Settlement provided for authorized forms of pottahs being drawn up of ■which the ryots were to have notice, and pottahs were to be granted to them accordingly, specifying the rent or, where that could not be specified, the rate, with all other terms and conditions.* No other agreements were to be permitted. But the rents to be demanded were not limited by the assessment of the jumma upon the zemindars; the zemindars being at liberty to demand what rent they thought fit, subject to the restrictions imposed upon them,3 one of which was that the rent must be an entire sum, consolidating the abwabs lawfully chargeable with the assul or original rent. The provisions for compulsory preparation of pottahs, and for invalidating all but those duly authorized, were rescinded by Regulation V of 1812, section 3; and it was declared by that Regulation that proprietors might lease their lands in such form as the parties chose. By section 2 of Act X of 1859, and section 2 of Act VIII of 1869 (B.C.), every ryot is entitled to receive from the person to whom the rent of the land held or cultivated by him is payable a pottah containing the following particulars :— the quantity and boundaries of the land, and where fields

1 Colebrooke's Supplement, 253. Harington's Analysis, Vol. II, 53.

» Regulations of 23rd November 1791, arts. 59 to 62. Regulation I of 1793, ss. 56 to 59. The notice to the ryots was dispensed with by Regulation I of 1793.

* Regulations of 23rd November 1791, arts. 45, 55, 57. Regulation I of 1793, ss. 52, 54.

« ПредишнаНапред »